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A HINDU means a person who regards this land of 
BHARATVARSHA, from the Indus to the 
Seas as his Father- Land as well 

as his Holy-Land that is 
the cradle land of his religion. " 

Vinayak Damodar Savarkar 

Who delivers this our Nation of Sapta Sindhus who 
endows us with wealth, do thou O ! Lord, hurl 
thy mighty thunder- bolt to destroy 
our enemies — the Dasas. " 

Price Rs. Two 


Savarkar Sadan, Bombay 28. 


S. S. Savarkar 

Veer Savarkar Prakashan 
Savarkar Sadan, Bombay 28 * 

Fifth Edition 

Author's birthday 
28 May 1969 

Copies : 5000 Price Rs. 2 / - 

First Edition J 923 

Second ; ' 1942 

Third " 1950 

Fourth " 1965 

Fifth " 1969 

Printer : 

M/s Bhave (P.) Ltd. 

Byculla, Bombay 8. 

Preface by the Publisher 
of second Editon 

The romantic history of almost all books by Veer 
Savarkar apart from the originality and excellence of 
their subject and style, does in itself entitle them to 
get prominently featured in the world classics. 

The history of this book on " Hindutva " also 
does not form an exception to this general statement. 

(1 ) It was during his stay from 1906 to 1910 in 
England that the attention of Veer Savarkarji was 
drawn pointedly to the question as to who can by pre- 
cisely called a ' Hindu '. There was a perfect chaos 
raging in India at that time as regards this problem 
which owing to the controversy in connection with 
communal representation assumed an acutely Political 
aspect. The Arya-Samajists, the Sikhs, the Brahmos^ 
the Jains, and several other important constituents 
which composed and formed along with the Sanatanists 
the great Hindu community were some times counted as 
Hindus and at other times as non-Hindus as a whim or 
fad, a policy or petty interests dictated. From the most 
eminent scholars both Indian and English right down to 
the penny aliner in the daily sheets, each and all who 
got interested in the subject tried to define the word 
' Hindu \ How the more precisely they tried to define 
the word ' Hindu ' the more confounded the confusion 
grew, could best be seen by the fact that a respectable 


and studied booklet published at that time on the sub- 
ject " Who is a Hindu " could collect some fifty defini- 
tions of the word which then held the field and how 
the author of it at last summed up the argument by 
pointing out that, the word ' Hindu * was simply unde- 
finable ! 

After studying this subject from all its view points 
Veer Savarkarji came to the conclusion that the real 
cause of failure in arriving at a comprehensive as well 
as a correct definition of the word ' Hindu ' lay in the 
popular error of identifying the word almost entirely, 
with its religious aspect alone. By ' A Hindu ' they 
only understood one who owned Hinduism i. e. Hindu 
religion. Further on, even this solitary religious aspect 
was understood and emphasised rather exclusively in 
its dogmatic or doctrinal forms. But it was very 
naturally or almost inevitably found that no unity 
or uniformity could be traced which was comprehen- 
sive enough to encompass the beliefs, the dogmas, the 
doctrines, symbolical or scriptural owned by the crores 
and crores of people who constituted the great Hindu 
community. Above all they never grasped the full im- 
port of the national aspect implied in the word 
* Hindu \ The inevitable consequence was that some 
scholars and politicians gave up altogether the attempt 
to define the word ' Hindu ' and those who persisted 
in it framed inspite of their scholarly and erudite treat- 
ment, definitions which proved either too exclusive or 
too overlapping. 

To avoid all this confusion Veer Savarkar decided 
to approach the question chiefly from its historical 


aspect and traced the development of the Hindu Race, 
religion and polity ever since the Vaidic period. 

While he was thus fixing and co-ordinating the 
essential constituents of the conception expressed by 
the word * Hindu ', Veer Savarkar was arrested in Eng- 
land as a political Revolutionist and subsequently sen- 
tenced with two transportations for life, amounting to 
50 years of imprisonment. 

(II) Some years after his transportation to the 
Andamans and his stay in cellular confinement his 
thoughts reverted again to the question of the definition. 
He decided to write a brochure on the subject. 

But where was the paper to come from? or the 
pen ? The possession of a slip of paper even an inch 
long was sure to get the culprit in hand-cuffs for a 
week. But Veer Savarkar had long before that, found a 
way out of the difficulty and secured a store of paper 
as well as pens which lay at his own disposal. 

It was the white-washed walls of his own solitary 
cell that served him as a paper. With a small pointed 
pebble or a thorn he had already developed a masterly 
skill in scratching and scribbling on the walls undete- 
cted by the watchman poems running into hundreds of 
lines which lay there till he got them committed to 
memory as convenience would permit. Thus he had 
already finished the famous poem *' Kamala " and some 
contos of "Gomantak". When the yearly white-washing 
of the prison wall was over he could get a fresh supply 
of papers for the next year. It was on the white-washed 
walls of his solitary cell in the Andamanees prison 


that the first outlines of this book were sketched, chap- 
ters and points fixed and the definition versified. 

A gifted poet as Savarkarji was he framed the 
definition into the following fine couplet .... 

It is as melodious and pleasing to the ear as it is 
convincing in its inexorable logic to the intellect. Its 
wording is redolent with an appeal to the dearest and 
holiest traditions of the Hindu race. It has caught up 
the incomprehensible diversity and dimensions of a 
people some thirty crores in count in the two magical 
words ' facPT ' and ' J^ ' — the identity of the 
Fatherland with the Holyland. 

This couplet has now come to exercise the authority 
of a quotation from holy scriptures. Large sections of 
the Hindu public have actually been inquiring every 
now and then the name of the Smriti and Puran from 
which this couplet is quoted. The Hindu Mahasabha 
and the Hindudom in general from Kashmir to Rame- 
shwar have enthusiastically acknowledged it as the best 
possible definition of the Hindu- Nation — ' f?f ^ c £« ' 

Apart from the religious aspect involved in the 
conception of the words 'Hindu* and 'Hinduism' 
Veer Savarkar had to coin some new words such as 
'Hindutva', 'Hinduness', 'Hindudom' in order to express 
totality of the cultural, historical, and above all the 
national aspects along with the religious one, which 
mark out the Hindu People as a whole. The definition 
is not consequently meant to be. a definition of Hindu- 


Dharma, or Hindu religion. It is a definition of ' f^l^' 
'Hindunees. ' It is essentially national in its outlook 
and comprehends the Hindu People as a Hindu-Rashtra. 

(Ill) After having fixed and committed to me- 
mory the outlined sketch of his intended work and 
the versified definition Veer Savarkarji discussed it all 
every now and then with some of his learned com- 
patriots and co-prisoners in the Andaman jail, in the 
latter half of his imprisonment when they could some- 
times meet together. 

But then the question arose how to get the definition 
and the main points of the arguments published in 
India ? Even the boldest optimist could not have 
dared to believe under those circumstances that Veer 
Savarkar could ever be released in his life-time and 
would be able to read in India in print whatever he 
had scratched and scribbled on the white-washed walls 
of his cells. 

The only way therefore to convey a part at least 
of the literature he wrote or composed in the Andamans 
was to get some of his compatriots who were due to be 
released from time to time, to commit to memory some 
of his poems and the outlines of his literary works. 
Thus it was by oral recitals that the definition and the 
leading arguments were re-transported to India by some 
of the political prisoners as they got released and 
reached the Indian shores during 1917 to 1919. Then 
they arranged to send copies of the gist of this treatise 
along with the definition to a number of prominent 
Hu»/ M Sanghastanist gentlemen throughout India. 


(IV) But as Fate would have it, the unexpected 
happened and the Savarkar brothers were released from 
the cellular jail after some twelve years of transporta- 
tion and were shipped back to India., but only to be 
locked up again behind the prison bars of Indian jails ! 

In those days there were a number of Congressite 
political prisoners also in the Indian jails for short 
terms of imprisonment, where Veer Savarkar was 
transferred from time to time. The Congressite poli- 
tical prisoners had special facilities which included 
writing materials. Due to this fact, inspite of his being 
treated and confined apart as a revolutionary prisoner 
under special restrictions, he found it feasible to get 
hold now and then of real paper and pencils ! 

He immediately wrote out this treatise on ' Hindu- 
tva, ' all undetected by jail officials and through vari- 
ous surreptitious channels parts of it continued to be 
cleverly smuggled out of those Indian Prison walls till 
at last the whole work reached its Destination. 

Soon afterwords it was in 1923 that the first edi- 
tion of this book on ' Hindutva ' was brought out by 
Shri. V. V. Kelkar, B. A., LL. B., advocate, Nagpur. As 
Veer Savarkar was still in prison the author's name 
was not published. The book appeared under the 
' non-de-plume ' ' A Marat ha ' 

Even though it was thus shorn of the halo which 
would have invested it, had it been associated with the 
name of its illustrious author, yet the book was wel- 
comed with unbounded enthusiasm by the Hindu 
Sanghastanist public. Such eminent Hindu leaders as 

the late Lala Lajpatrai, Pt. Mad an Mohan Malaviya 
and several others hailed it as the most original and 
scholarly contribution to the Hindu Idealogy. The 
definition acted as does some scientific discovery of a 
new truth in re-shaping and re-co-ordinating all current 
Thought & Action. Torn, broken up and confined in 
water-tight compartments, the Hindus themselves had 
come to doubt if they were a homogeneous people at 
all. To them the book came as a veritable Revelation ! 
For it revealed to them their real National-Self, in 
which and through which consciously or unconsciously 
they lived and moved and had their organic Being. At 
its touch arose an organic order where a chaos of castes 
and creeds ruled. The definition provided a broad basic 
foundation on a bed-rock on which a consolidated and 
mighty Hindu Nation could take a secure stand. It 
was later on adopted by the Hindu Mahasabha itself 
as its authoritative definition of Hindutva. 

Out of numerous tributes paid to the author of 
this book we cull and cite only two. Wrote the late 
Swami Shraddhanandaji 

" It must have been one of those Vaidic 
dawns indeed which inspired our Seers with 
new (ruths, that revealed to the author of 
' Hindutva ' this ' Mantra ' this definition 
of Hindutva! !" 

Shri Vijayaraghavacharyaji, the Grand old man of 
South India who presided once over the National 
Congress and once over the Hindu Mahasabha also 

( viii ) 

has only recently read this book. He writes thus in 
his letter dated the 9-4-1941 from Salem :— 

"I have rapidly run through' Hindu cva. ' 
Especially the last chapter is inimitably patri- 
otic. I am afraid I am unable to find suitable 
words to describe my ideas regarding the 
book, especially the last chapter. I congra- 
tulate the author from the bottom of my 
heart on the excellence of his work and 
prayer-fully wish him long life and health." 


[ received some letters and personal requests from 
scholars, and admirers of Veer Savarkar for copies of 
'Hindutva'. I had to reply to them In the negative as 
copies were not available. I used to feel sorry to say no! 
I had no capital to publish a new edition and the demand 
was not so much as to pay the expenses of printing! 
One day when I was discussing the propagation of 
Veer Savarkar's ideology with one of his admirers he 
said he would give Rs. one thousand as a loan to print 
this book ! I took that loan and went to Shri. Bhave, of 
Bhave (P) Ltd., just to enquire whether he would print 
the book for me. He said he would not print one 
thousand copies. He would not undertake such a small 
order. Such books should be printed and distributed 
like the Bible. I told him that he had expressed the very 
feelings that I and many others had in their hearts. 
But how could I give effect to them ? Shri Bhave said he 
would do it. He is wellknown in the printing world of 
Maharashtra for his big plans, new ideas and effecient 
execution and generous nature. Because of his co-opera- 
tion and determination I have been able to publish this 
edition 1 1 have no words to thank him !! I must also 
mention the names of Shri. G. M. Joshi, Shri. S. T. 
Godbole, Shri. N. C. Athavale and other admirers of 
Veer Savarkar for writing introduction, proof correction 
and other work! Thanks are also due to the world- 
admired artist Shri Raghuvir Mulgaonkar for the 
colourful cover he has donated. 

With a request to the readers to spread, propa- 
gate and work for the success of * Hindutva' — 

S. S. Savarkar 


This is the fifth edition of Veer Savarkar* s Hindu- 
tva. Much water has flowed under the bridge since the 
first edition of the book was published in 1923. India has 
got independence yet she is a weak nation in confron- 
tation with a nuclear power. Yet Savarkar's book is for 
all time. The principles inunciated in this book will guide 
Hindus as well as non- Hindus of this country for cen- 
turies to come. It is interesting to see how the predic- 
tions made in this book have, without a single excep- 
tion, come true. 

Many scholars who had tried to define the terms, 
Hindu and Hinduism, had failed in their attempts to 
arrive at a satisfactory definition. They studied the 
beliefs, manners and customs, rites and rituals of the 
different castes and communities that call themselves 
Hindus and found nothing common in them. The defini- 
tions they offered were either too wide or too narrow,or 
suffered from the faults of being negative definitions or 
merely descriptions. Savarkar knew that, though there 
were differences among the sects of Hindus, yet there 
was a golden thread that kept them united. What was it 
that bound them together? What were the distinguishing 
features that made them feel that they were one 
nation ? Savarkar applied his mind to this problem and 
tried a different approach the historical one. His effor- 
ts were richly rewarded. With his profound knowledge 
of the vedas, the mythology, the epics and the history 

of India as well as those of other countries he found 
that the use of the word Hindu is as old as the Rigveda 
itself, and is associated with the Jand of the Indus. He 
gives numerous quotations in this book from the oldest 
holy books of the Hindus, the Vedas, puranas, medie- 
val poetry, the works of Sikh Gurus, modern history and 
conclusively proves that the Hindus have always used 
the term, Hindu, proudly to designate their nation. The 
concept of Hindutva is Savarkar's own and corres- 
ponds exactly to the definition of a nation in modern 
political theory. The Hindus are tied together by bonds 
of a common fatherland, ties of blood, a common 
culture and civilization, common heroes, common 
history and obove all, the will to remain united as a 
nation. The London Times rightly styled Savarkar as 
father of Hinduness. 

Savarkar also insists that the term, Hinduism, 
should include the beliefs of all the sects-both vaidic 
and non-Vaidic, that call themselves Hindus, This 
should remove the misgivings of our non- Vaidic breth- 
ern; The Hindu Code does not define the term, but 
gives a description and that too is negative. However, 
the denotation of the term that it gives is exactly the 
same as Savarkar' s definition. 

Savarkar had a way of getting at the essential 
reality of things. About common blood he says, "After 
all there is throughout the world so far as man is 
concerned but a single race-the human race, kept alive 
by one common blood, the human blood. All other talk 
is at best provisional, a makeshift, and only relatively 


true. Nature is constantly trying to overthrow the arti- 
ficial brrriers you raise between race and race. Sexual 
attraction has proved more powerful than the comm- 
ands of all the prophets put together." 

This was not merely a baffling academic problem 
to which he tried to find a satisfactory solution, though 
even from the academic point of view his contribution 
is invaluable. He knew that India must stand or fall 
with the fortunes of the Hindus. India is the fatherland 
and the holy land of Hindus. Loyalty and devotion to 
India would unite Hindus to achieve freedom and to 
defend it against foreign aggression. 

Loyalty to one's fatherland and loyalty to one's 
holyland are the two great forces that govern the nati- 
onal life of a country. When a person or a community 
is torn between these two loyalties their actions are 

These are facts which every realist must take into 
account. To prove his point Savarkar has given numer- 
ous instances from world history. It was necessary to 
make the Hiudus aware of these common bonds to 
unite them and to fight fissiparous tendencies among 
them. As a young man Savarkar was the leader of a 
band of revolutionaries. He was released from the 
Andaman jail in 1924 and was interned in Ratnagiri. 
Owing to restrictions placed upon him he confined his 
activities to bringing about a social revolution among 
Hindus. When all restrictions upon him were withdrawn 
in 1937 Hindus of all sects and creeds rallied round him 
under the Pan-Hindu flag. He led the movement for the 


freedom and integrity of India. When the Atlantic 
charter was drafted and agreed upon he sent a cable to 
president Roosevelt insisting that the Atlantic charter 
should be made applicable to India. It was an act of 
great diplomacy, for his demand caused a stir in Ame- 
rica. Articles appeared in leading papers of that country 
supporting India's demand for freedom. When the ques- 
tion of giving the right of self-determination to Provi- 
nces was being discussed between Mr- Cripps and Indian 
leaders Savarkar, owing to his profound knowledge of 
Indian history and his ability to interpret it accurately 
could bluntly tell Mr. Cripps that it would take him 
years to understand how Hindusthan-India was one 
nation. Some Indian leaders, however, had a morbid 
fear of weapons and the people who legally or illegally 
used them. They were willing to concede the Muslim., 
League's demand for pakistan. When it was certain that 
India would be partitioned, Savarkar in retaliation 
led the movement for the vivisection of Pakistan itself. 
Lord Mountbatten saw the justic of the demand and 
forced Mr. Jinnah to agree to part with the Hindu 
majority parts of Bengal & Punjab. In this way western 
Bangal and eastern Punjab became parts of the Indian 
Union. Under Savarkar's leadership Hindus had their 

Savarkar is perfectly logical in his arguments. He 
meets all objections dispassionately and logically. He is 
able to convince his opponents because his own convi- 
ctions are the result of deep study and clear thinking. 
But once a theory is proved beyond doubt his writing 
becomes emotional like that of a poet. His paragraph 


on the blessings that God has showered upon this 
country of ours reads like a hymn from the Rigveda. 
His appeal to the Hindus is immensely insipring. 

Savarkar was an idealist without being a vision- 
ary. He foresees the day when cultural and religious 
bigotry will disband its forces pledged to aggressive 
egoism and religions will cease to be 'isms' and will 
become the common fund of eternal princiciples that 
lie at the root of all; that will be a common foundation 
on which the 'Human State' will majestically and 
finally rest. ' 

Bombay 28 

28 May 1966 G. ML Joshi. 

(Veer Savarkar 's birthday). 

Essentials of Hindutva 

What is In a name ? 

We hope that the fair Maid of Verona who made 
the impassioned appeal to her lover to change 'a name 
that was * nor hand, nor foot, nor arm, nor face, nor 
any other part belonging to a man' would forgive us for 
this our idolatrous attachment to it when we make bold 
to assert that, 'Hindus we are and love to remain so! ' 
We too would, had we been in the position of that good 
Friar, have advised her youthful lover to yield to the 
pleasing pressure of the logic which so fondly urged 
' What's in a name ? That which we call a rose would 
smell as sweet by any other name!' For, things do 
matter more than their names, especially when you have 
to choose one only of the two, or when the association 
between them is either new or simple. The very fact that 
a thing is indicated by a dozen names in a dozen human 
tongues disarms the suspicion that there is an invariable 
connection or natural concomitance between sound 
and the meaning it conveys. Yet, as the association of 
the word with the thing it signifies grows stronger and 
lasts long, so does the channel which connects the two 
states, of consciousness tend to allow an easy flow of 
thoughts from one to the other, till at last it seems almost 
impossible to separate them. And when in addition to 
this a number of secondary thoughts or feelings that are 


generally roused by the thing get mystically entwined with 
the word that signifies it, the name seems to matter as 
much as the thing itself. Would the fair Apostle of the 
creed that so movingly questioned * What's in a name?* 
have liked it herself to nickname the God of her idola- 
try as ' Paris * instead of * Romeo ' ? Or would "he have 
been ready to swear by the moon that 'tipped.with silver 
all the fruit tree-tops,' that it would serve as sweet and 
musical to his heart to call his 'Juliet' by ' any other 
name ' such as for example - ' Rosalind ? ' Nay more ; 
there are words which imply an idea in itself extremely 
complex or an ideal or a vast and abstract generalization 
and which seem to take, as it were, a being unto them- 
selves or live and grow as an organism would do. Such 
names though they be 'nor hand, nor foot, nor any other 
part belonging to a man,' are not all that, precisely 
because they are th« very soul of man. They become the 
idea itself and live longer than generations of man do. 
Jesus died but Christ has survived the Roman Emperors 
and that Empire. Inscribe at the foot of one of those 
beautiful paintings of 'Madonna' the name of 'Fatima' 
and a Spaniard would keep gazing at it as curiously as 
at any other piece of art; but just restore the name of 
c Madonna ' instead, and behold his knees would lose 
their stiffness and bend, his eyes their inquisitiveness 
and turn inwards in adoring recognition, and his whole 
being get suffused with a consciousness of the presence 
of Divine Motherhood and Love ! What is in a name ? 
Ah ! call Ayodhya, Honolulu, or nickname her immor- 
tal Prince, a Pooh Bah, or ask the Americans to change 
Washington into a Chengizkhan, or persuade a Moha- 


mmedan to call himself a Jew, and you would soon find 
that the ' open sesame ' was not the only word of its 

Hindutva is different from Hinduism 

To this category of names which have been to 
mankind a subtle source of life and inspiration belongs 
the word Hindutva, the essential nature and significance 
of which we have to investgate into. The ideas and 
ideals, the systems and societies, the thoughts and 
sentiments which have centered round this name are so 
varied and rich, so powerful and so subtle, so elusive 
and yet so vivid that the term Hindutva defies all 
attempts at analysis. Forty centuries, if not more, had 
been at work to mould it as it is. Prophets and poets, 
lawyers and law-givers, heroes and historians, have 
thought, lived, fought and died just to have it spelled 
thus. For indeed, is it not the resultant of countless 
actions — now conflicting, now commingling, now co- 
operating — of our whole race ? Hindutva is not a word 
but a history. Not only the spiritual or religious history 
of our people as at times it is mistaken to be by being 
confounded with the other cognate term Hinduism, but 
a history in full. Hinduism is only a derivative, a frac- 
tion, a part of Hindutva. Unless it is made clear what is 
meant by the latter the first remains unintelligible and 
vague. Failure to distinguish between these two terms has 
given rise to much misunderstanding and mutual suspi- 
cion between soxne of those sister communities that have 
inherited this inestimable and common treasure of our 
Hindu civilization. What is the fundamental difference 


in the meaning of these two words would be clear as 
our argument proceeds. Here it is enough to point out 
that Hindutva is not identical with what is vaguely 
indicated by the term Hinduism. By an 'ism' it is gene- 
rally meant a theory or a code more or less based on 
spiritual or religious dogma or system. But when we 
attempt to investigate into the essential significance 
of Hindutva we do not primarily — and certainly not 
mainly — concern ourselves with any particular 
theocratic or religious dogma or creed. Had not linguistic 
usage stood in our way then s Hinduness ' would have 
certainly been a better word than Hinduism as a near 
parallel to Hindutva. Hindutva embraces all the depart- 
ments of thought and activity of the whole Being of our 
Hindu race. Therefore, to understand the significance of 
this term Hindutva, we must first understand the essen- 
tial meaning of the word Hindu itself and realize how it 
came to exercise such imperial sway over the hearts of 
millions of mankind and won a loving allegiance from 
the bravest and best of them. But before we can do that, 
k is imperative to point out that we are by no means 
attempting a definition or even a description of the 
more limited, less satisfactory and essentially sectarian 
term Hinduism. How far we can succeed or are justified 
in doing that would appear as we proceed. 

What is a Hindu ? 

Although it would be hazardous at the present stage 
of oriental research to state definitely the period when 
the foremost band of the intrepid Aryans made it their 
home and lighted their first sacrificial fire on the banks 


of the Sindhu, the Indus, yet certain it is that long 
before the ancient Egyptians, and Babylonians had built 
their magnificent civilization, the holy waters of the 
Indus were daily witnessing the lucid and curling colu- 
mns of the scented sacrificial smokes and the valleys 
resounding with the chants of Vedic hymns- the spiritual 
fervour that animated their souls. The adventurous valour 
that propelled their intrepid enterprizes, the sublime 
heights to which their thoughts rose-all these had 
marked them out as a people destined to Jay the founda- 
tion of a great and enduring civilization. By the time 
they had definitely cut themselves aloof from their 
cognate and neighbouring people especially the Persians, 
the Aryans, had spread out to the farthest of the seven 
rivers, Sapta Sindhus', and not only had they deve- 
loped a sense of nationality but had already succeeded 
in giving it ' a local habitation and a name ! * Out of 
their gratitude to the genial and perennial network of 
waterways that ran through the land like a system of 
nerve- threads and wove them into a Being, they very 
naturally took to themselves the name of Sapta 
Sindhus an epithet that was applied to the whole of 
Vedic India in the oldest records of the world, the 
Rigveda itself. Aryans or the cultivators as they essen- 
tially were, we can well understand the divine love and 
homage they bore to these seven rivers presided over by 
the River, 'the Sindhu', which to them were but 
a visible symbol of the common nationality and culture. 

1 *rerftre 


The Indians in their forward march had to meet 
many a river as genial and as fertilizing as these but 
never could they forget the attachment they felt and the 
homage they paid to the Sapta Sindhus which had 
welded them into a nation and furnished the name 
which enabled their forefathers to voice forth their 
sense of national and cultural unity. Down to this day 
a Sindhu2- a Hindu- wherever he may happen to be, 
will gratefully remember and symbolically invoke the 
presence of these rivers that they may refresh and 
purify his soul. 

vi *r *rJt *R^ ^ro^fa ^Ta"^ ?<fr*f *^crr q^zrr i 

Not only had these people been known to them- 
selves as 'Sindhus' but we have definite records to 
show that they were known to their surrounding 
nations-at any rate to one of them-by that very 
name, 'Sapta Sindhu* The letter 's'3 in Sanskrit is at 
times changed into h4 in some of the Prakrit langua- 
ges, both Indian and non-Indian. For example, the 
word Sapta5 has become Hapta6 not only in Indian 
Prakrits but also in the European languages too; we 
have Hapta7 /. e., week, in India and ' Heptarchy ' 

2 ftnj-% 3 sr 4 ^ 5to 6 ^ 7 ^err 


in Europe, Kesari8 in Sanskrit becomes Kehari9 in 
old Hindi, Saraswatiio becomes Harhvatin in 
Persian and Asuru becomes AhurJ2 And then we 
actually find that the Vedic name of our nation Sapta 
Sindhu had been mentioned as Hapta Hindu in the 
A vesta by the ancient Persian people. Thus in the very 
dawn of history we find ourselves belonging to the 
nation of the Sindhus or Hindus and this fact was well 
known to our learned men even in the Puranic period- 
In expounding the doctrine that many of the Mle- 
chhais tongues had been but the mere offshoots of the 
Sanskrit language the Bhavishya PuranH clearly cites 
this fact and says — 

srrq- ^§ urea fe t^^t fm^f^ts-JTsr^ n 


Thus knowing for certain that the Persians used to 
designate the Vedic Aryans as Hindus and knowing also 
the fact that we generally call a foreign and unknown 
people by the term by which they are known to those 
through whom we come to know them, we can safely 
conclude that most of the remoter nations that flouri- 
shed then must have applied the same epithet 'Hindu ' 
to our land and people as the ancient Persians did. Not 

8 %*rft 9 %?ft 1 *TCWcfV 1 1 ^cft 
12 3T*( 3ffT 13 **N3 14 srfe^r 3*T*r. 


only' that but even in the very region of the Sapta 
Sindhus the thinly scattered native tribes too, must have 
been knowing the Aryans as Hindus in the local dialects 
in accordance with the same linguistic law. Further on, 
as the Vedic Sanskrit began to give birth to the Indian 
Prakrits which became the spoken tongues of the majo- 
rity of the decendants of these very Sindhus as well as 
the assimilated and the crossborn castes, these too might 
lisave called themselves as Hindus without any influence 
from the foreign people. For the Sanskrit S changes into 
H as often in Indian Prakrits as in the non-Indian 
ones. Therefore, so far as definite records are concerned, 
it is indisputably clear that the first and almost the 
cradle name chosen by the patriarchs of our race to 
designate our nation and our people, is Sapta Sindhu 
or Hapta Hindu and that almost all nations of the then 
known world seemed to have known us by this very 
epithet, Sindhus or Hindus. 

Name older still 

So far we have been treading on solid ground of 
recorded facts, but now we cannot refrain ourselves from 
making an occasional excursion into the borderland of 
conjecture. So far we have not pinned our faith to any 
theory about the original home of the Aryans. But if 
the most widely accepted theory of their entrance into 
India be relied on, then a natural curiosity arises as to 
the origin of the names by which they called the new 
scenes of their adopted home. Did they coin all those 
names from their own tongue ? Could they have done 
so ? Is it not generally true that when we meet a new 


scene or enter a new country we call them by the very 
names-may be in a slightly changed form so as to spit 
our vocal ability or taste -by which they are known to 
the native people there? Of course, at times we love 
to call new scenes by names redolent with the memory 
of the clear old ones -especially when new colonies aie 
being established in a virgin and but thinly populated 
continent. But this explanation could only be satis- 
factory when it is proved that the name given to the 
new place already existed in the old country and even 
then it could not be denied that the other process of 
calling new scenes by the names which they already 
bear is more universally followed. Now we know it for 
certain that the region of the Sapta Sindhus was, tho- 
ugh very thinly, populated by scattered tribes. Some of 
them seem to have been friendly towards the newcomers 
and it is almost certain that many an individual had 
served the Aryans as guides and introduced them to 
the names and nature of the new scenes to which the 
Aryans could not be but local strangers. The Vidya- 
dharas, Apsaras, Yakshas, Rakshas, Gandharvas and 
Kinnarasi5 were not all or altogether inimical to the 
Aryans as at times they are mentioned as being bene- 
volent and good-natured folks. Thus it is probable 
that many names given to these great rivers by the 
original inhabitants of the soil may have been 
sanskritised and adopted by the Aryans. We have 
numerous proofs of this nature in the assimilative 
expansion of those people and their tongues; witness 

1 5 f^I^TO^^^mfoSTCT: I 


the words Shalakantakata,i6 Malaya, Milind, Alasada, 
(Alexandria) Suluva (Selucus) etc. If this be true 
then it is quite probable that the great Indus was 
known as Hindu to the original inhabitants of our 
land and owing to vocal peculiarity of the Aryans 
it got changed into Sindhu when they adopted 
it by the operation of the same rule that S is the 
Sanskritised equivalent of H. Thus Hindu would be the 
name that this land and the people that inhabited it 
bore from time so immemorial that even the Vedic 
name Sindhu is but a later and secondary form of it. 
If the epithet Sindhu dates its antiquity in the glimmer- 
ing twilight of history then the word Hindu dates 
its antiquity from a period so remoter than the first 
that even mythology fails to penetrate - to trace it 
to its source. 

Hindus, a nation 

The activities of so intrepid a people as the 
Sindhus or Hindus could no longer be kept cooped or 
cabined wilhin the narrow compass of the Panchanad 
or the Punjab. The vast and fertile plains farther off 
stood out inviting the efforts of some strong and 
vigorous race. Tribe after tribe of the Hindus issued 
forth form the land of their nursery and led by the 
consciousness of a great mission and their Sacrificial 
Fire that was the symbol thereof, they soon reclaimed 
the vast, waste and but very thinly populated lands. 
Forests were felled, agriculture flourished, cities rose, 

16 ^^*£T, *r^r, fafa^, a^nsi, %?>? 


kingdoms thrived, - the touch of the human hand 
changed the whole face of the wild and unkemp 
nature. But while these great deeds were being achieved 
the Aryans had developed to suit their individualistic 
tendencies and the demands of their new environments 
a policy that was but loosely centralised. As time 
piassed on, the distances of their new colonies increased, 
and different peoples of other highly developed types 
began to be incorporated into their culture, the 
different settlements began to lead life politically 
very much centred in themselves. The new attachments 
thus formed, though they could not efface the 
old ones, grew more and more pronounced and 
powerful until the ancient generalizations and names 
gave way to the new. Some called themselves Kurus, 
others Kashis or Videhas or Magadhas while the 
old generic name of the Sindhus or Hindus was 
first overshadowed and then almost forgotten. Not 
that the conception of a national and cultural unity 
vanished, but it assumed other names and other 
forms, the politically most important of them being 
the institution of a Chakarvartin,i7 At last the great 
mission which the Sindhus had undertaken of 
founding a nation and a country, found and reached 
its geographical limit when the valorous Prince of 
Aypdhya made a triumphant entry in Ceylon and actu- 
ally brought the whole land from the Himalayas to the 
Seas under one sovereign sway. The day when the 
Horse of Victory returned to Ayodhya unchallenged 

17 ^^rfcf^ 


and unchallengeable, the great white Umbrella of Sover- 
eignty was unfurled over that Imperial throne of 
Ramchandra, the brave, Ramchandra the good, and a 
loving allegiance to him was sworn, not only by the 
Princes of Aryan blood but Hanuman, Sugriva, Bibhi- 
shana from the south-that day was the real birth-day of 
our Hindu people. It was truly our national day: for 
Aryans and Anaryans knitting themselves into a people 
were born as a nation. It summed up and politically 
crowned the efforts of all the generations that preceded 
it and it handed down a new and common mission, 
a common banner, a common cause which all the 
generations after it had consciously or unconsciously 
fought and died to defend. 

Other names 

A synthetic conception gains in strength if it finds 
a term comprehensive enough to give it an eloquent 
expression. The terms Aryawarta]8 or Bramhawartais 
were not so suitable as to express the vast 
synthesis that embraced the whole continent from the 
Indus to the sea and aimed to weld it into a nation. 
Aryawarta as defined by the ancient writers was the 
land that lay between the Himalayas and the Vindhya.20 
Although it was best suited to the circumstances 
which gave it birth, yet and therefore, it could not serve 
as a common name to a people that had welded Aryans 
and non-Aryans into a common race and had carried 

18 STOrfatf 19 sf^t 


their culture-empire far beyond the bending summits 
of VindhyadrL This necessity of finding a suitable term 
to express the expansive thought of an Indian Nation 
was more or less effectively met when the House of 
Bharat came to exercise its sway over the entire world. 
Without entering into speculation as to who this Bharat 
was the Vedic Bharat or the Jain one or what was 
the exact period at which he ruled, it is here enough 
for us to know that his name had been not only the 
accepted but the cherished epithet by which the people 
of Aryawarta and Daxinapatha2t delighted to call 
their common motherland and their common cultural 
empire. Thus as the horizon opened out to the South 
we find that the centre of gravity had very naturally 
shifted from the Sapta Smdhus to the Gangetic Delta 
and the name Saptasindhu or Aryawavt or Daxinapath 
gave way to the politically grander expression 
Bharatkhanda22 which included in its sweep all that 
lay between the Himalayas and the Seas. This is most 
clearly indicated by the definition of our Nation 
attempted at a period when the vast conception 
must have been drawning over the minds of our great 
thinkers. We have met with no better attempt to define 
our position as a people than the terse littJe couplet 
in the Vishu Puran, ' The land which is to the 
north of the sea and to the south of the Himalaya 
mountain is named Bharata inhabited by the descen- 
dants of are Bharata23. 

21 sfa*rre*r 22 ^crefe 


( feojTjKTUT ) 

How Names Are Given 

But this new word Bharatavarsha could not 
altogether suppress our cradle name Sindhus or 
Hindus nor could it make us forget the love we bore to 
that River of rivers - the Sindhu at whose breast our 
Patriarchs and people had drunk the milk of life. Our 
frontier provinces which bordered the course of Indus 
still clung to their ancient name Sindhu Rashtra.24 
And throughout the Sanskrit literature we find 
Sindhu Sauveers25 recognized as an integral and an im- 
portant part of our body politic. In the great Maha- 
bharata war the king of Sindhu Sauveer figures pro- 
minently and is said to have been closely related to the 
Bharatas. Although the limits of the Sindhu Rashtra 
shifted from time to time, yet the language that the 
people speak did then and does even now mark them 
out as a people by themselves from Multan to the 
sea, and the name ' Sindhi ' which it bears is an em- 
phatic reminder that all those who speak it are Sindhus 
and are entitled to be recognized as a geographical 
and political unit in the commonwealth of our Indian 
people. Although the epithet Bharatakhand succeeded 
it almost overshadowing the cradle name of our nation 
in India, yet the foreign nations seem to have cared 

23 *rcit 24 ftr^rw 25' ftratf^tT 


little for it and as our frontier provinces continued to 
be known by their ancient name, so even our immediate 
neighbours - the Avestic Persians, the Jews, the Greeks 
and others clung to our ancient name Sindhus or 
Hindus. They did not merely indicate the borderland 
of Indus by this term as in days gone by, but the whole 
nation into which the ancient Sindhus by expansion 
and assimilation had grown. The Avestic Persians 
know us as Hindus, the Greeks dropping the harsh 
accent as Indos and through the Greeks almost all 
Europe and later on America as Hindus or Indians, 
Even Huen-tsang who lived so long with us persists in 
calling us Shintus26 or Hintus.27- Barring a few 
examples as that of Afganisthan being called as Shweta 
Bharat28 by the Parthians, very rarely indeed had 
the foreigners forgotten our cradle name or preferred 
the new one Bharat to it. Down to this day the 
whole world knows us as ' Hindus ? and our land as 
' Hindusthan ' as if in fulfilment of the wishes of our 
Vedic fathers who were the first to make that choice. 

But a name by its nature is determined not so 
much by what one likes to call oneself but generally by 
what others like to do. In fact a name is called into 
existence for this very purpose. Self is known to itself 
immutable and without a name or even without a form. 
But when it comes in contact or conflict with a non-self 
then alone it stands in need of a name if it wants to 
communicate with others or if others persist in commu- 
nicating with it. It is a game that requires two to play 

26 firs 27 f^ 28 ^r wts. 


at. If the world insists that a teacher or a wit must 
be handed down as an Ashtawakra29 or a Mulla 
Dopyaja^o well then he, in spite of his liking, is very 
likely to be remembered as such. If the name chosen 
by the world for us is not directly against our liking 
then it is yet more likely to shadow all other names. 
We might bear witness Page,3i Mujumdar, Peshawe. 
But if the world hits upon the word by which they 
would know us as one redolent of our glory or our 
early love then that word is certain not only to shadow 
but to survive every other name we may have. This 
fact added to the circumstances which brought us 
first into close contact and then into a fierce conflict 
with the world at large, soon enabled the epithet 
Hindu to assert itself once more and so vigorously as 
to push into the background even the well beloved 
name of Bharatakhanda itself. 

International Life 

Although Indians were by no means cut off from 
the outside world before the rise of Buddhism and 
although their world activities had already assumed 
such dimensions as to give a just occasion to our 
patriotic poet law-givers to claim 

' ^t^rsr^rw *m?nT^r*r?r: i 

[ Let all the people of the world learn their duties from 
the elders born in this land ] ; yet as far as the present 

29 a^T^ 30 *r?<*r <ct PTTsrr 31 qw, ?^r, fcrir 


argument is concerned, the international life of India 
after the rise of Buddhism, requires chiefly to be consi- 
dered, because it was about this time when political 
enterprise having exposed or exhausted all possibilities 
of expansion in our own land naturally began to over- 
flow its limits to an extent unevidenced before and the 
communications with the outsiders began to knock at 
our doors more impudently and even imperatively than 
they ever had done. In addition to these political 
developments the great and divine mission that set in 
motion 'the wheel of the law of Righteousness' made 
India the very heart-the very soul-of almost all the 
then known world. To countless millions of human 
souls from Misar to Mexico, the land of the Sindhus 
came to be the land of their Gods and Godmen. Thou- 
sands of pilgrims form distant shores poured into this 
country and thousands of scholars, preachers, sages 
and saints went from this land to all the then known 
world. But as the outside world persisted in recognizing 
us by our ancient name 'Sindbu' or 'Hindu' both these 
in-coming and out-going processes helped mightily to 
render that epithet to be the most prominent of our 
national names. The necessity of political and diplo- 
matic correspondence with various states, who knew us 
as Hindus or Indus, must also have, by making it 
incumbent on our people to respond to it, revived the 
use of this epithet first side by side with and then at 
times even instead of the name Bharatkhand. 

But if the rise of Buddhism has thus enabled this 
epithet to grow in prominence throughout the world 


and made us more and more conscious of ourselves as 
Hindus, then strange to say the fall of Buddhism only 
carried this process further than ever. 

Fall of Buddhism 

We fear that the one telling factor that contributed 
to the fall of Buddhism more than any other has 
escaped that detailed attention of scholars which it 
deserves. But as the subject in hand does but remotely 
involve its treatment here we cannot treat it here in 
full. All that we can do here is to make a few general 
remarks and leave them to be expounded and detailed 
out to a more favourable occasion if the work be not 
done by others better fitted to do it. Can it be that 
philosophical differences alone could have made our 
nation turn against Buddhism ? Not wholly : for, these 
differences had been there all along and even flourished 
side by side with each other. Can it be the general 
inanition and demoralization of the Buddhistic Church 
itself ? Not wholly ; for, if some of the Viharas sheltered 
a loose, lazy and promiscuous crowd of men and 
women who lived on others and spent what was not 
theirs on disreputable persuits of life, yet on the other 
hand the line of those spiritual giants of Arhat and 
Bhikkus had not altogether ended : nor had such scenes 
been peculiar to the Buddhistic Viharas alone ! All these 
and many other shortcomings would not have attra- 
cted such fierce attention and proved fatal to Buddhistic 
power in India had not the political consequences of 
the Buddhistic expansion been so disastrous to the 
national virility and even the national existence of our 


race. No prelude to a vast tragedy could be more 
dramatic in its effect in foreshadowing the culminating 
catastrophe than that incident in the life of the Shakya 
Sinha, when the news of the fate of the little tribal 
republic of the Shakyas was carried to their former 
Prince when he was just laying the foundation stone of 
the Buddhistic Church. He had already enrolled the 
flower of his clan in his Bhikkusangha and the little 
Shakya Republic thus deprived of its bravest and best, 
fell an easy victim to the strong and warlike in the very 
life time of the Shakya Sinha. The news when carried 
to him is said to have left the Enlightened unconce- 
rned. Centuries rolled on; the Prince of the Shakyas 
had grown into the Prince of Princes-the Lokajit-the 
great conqueror of worlds. The confines of his little 
Shakya State expanded and embraced the confines of 
India; and as if to give a touch of poetical precision 
and poetical justice, the woeful fate that had overtaken 
the tribal republic of Kapil-Vastu befell the whole of 
Bharatvarsha itself and it fell an easy prey to the strong 
and warlike-not like Shakyas to their own kith and 
kin-but the Lichis and Huns. Of course the Enlight- 
ened would perhaps remain as unaffected as ever, even 
if this news could ever reach him like the first. But 
the rest of Hindus then could not drink with equani- 
mity this cup of bitterness and political servitude at 
the hands of those whose barbarous violence could still 
be soothed by the mealy-mouthed formulas of 
Ahimsa32 and spiritual brotherhood, and whose steel 

32 arf^TT 


could still be blunted by the soft palm leaves and 
rhymed charms. We do not mean to underrate-much less 
accuse-the services of the great brotherhood and its 
divine mission- We have only to point out the 
concomitance that is too glaring to escape the attention 
of any student of history. We know that it could 
easily be pressed against this statement that the greatest 
and even the most powerful Indian Kings and Emp- 
erors known, belong to the Buddhist period. Yes, but 
known to whom ?-to Europeans and those of us who 
have unconsciously imbibed not only their thoughts 
but even their prejudices. There was a time when every 
school history in India opened from the Mohammedan 
invasion because the average English writers of that 
time knew next to nothing of our earlier life. Lately 
the general knowledge of Europe has extended back- 
wards to the rise of Buddhism and we too are apt to 
look upon it as the first and even the most glorious 
epoch of our history. The fact is, it is neither. We 
yield to none in our love, admiration and respect 
for the Buddha-the Dharma-the Sangha. They are 
all ours. Their glories are ours and ours their failures. 
Great was Ashoka, the Devapriya, and greater were the 
achievements of Buddhistic Bhikkus. But achievements 
as great if not greater and things as holy and more 
politic and statesmanly had gone before them and 
indeed enabled them to be what they were. So, we do 
not think that the political virility or the manly nobility 
of our race began and ended with the Mauryas alone 
-or was a consequence of their embracing Buddhism. 
Buddhism has conquests to claim but they belong to a 


world far removed from this our matter-of-fact world- 
where feet of clay do not stand long, and steel could be 
easily sharpened, and trishna33-thirst-is too powerful 
and real to be quenched by painted streams that flow 
perennially in heavens. These must have been the 
considerations that must have driven themselves home 
to the hearts of our patriots and thinkers when the 
Huns and Shakas poured like volcanic torrents and 
burnt all that thrived. The Indians saw that the cherish- 
ed ideals of their race-their thrones and their families 
and the very Gods they worshipped-were trampled under 
foot, the holy land of their love devastated and sacked 
by hordes of barbarians, so inferior to them in language, 
religion, philosophy, mercy and all the soft and human 
attributes of man and God-but superior to them in 
strength alone — strength that summed up its creed, 
in two words — Fire and Sword ! The inference was 
clear- Clear also was the fact that Buddhistic logic had 
no argument that could efficiently meet this new and 
terrible dualism -this strange Bible of Fire and Steel, 
So the leaders of thought and action of our race had to 
rekindle their Sacrificial Fire to oppose the sacrilegious 
one and to re-open the mines of Vedic fields for steel, to 
get it sharpened on the altar of Kali34, ' the Terrible 
so that Mahakal35— the ' Spirit of Time ' be appeased. 
Nor were their anticipations belied. The success of 
the renovated Hindu arms was undisputed and 
indisputable. Vikramaditya who drove the foreigners 
from the Indian soil and Lalitaditya who caught 

33 er^TT 34 *T?ft 35 Jr^ra 


and chastised them in their very dens from Tartary to 
Mongolia were but complements of each other. 
Valour had accomplished what formulas had failed to 
Once more the people rose to the heights of great- 
ness that shed its lustre on all departments of life. 
Poetry and philosophy, art and architecture, agriculture 
and commerce, thought and action felt the quickening 
impulse which consciousness of independence strength 
and victory alone can radiate. The reaction as usual 
was complete even to a fault. ' Up with the Vedic 
Dharma ! * * Back to the Vedas ! ' The national cry grew 
louder and louder, more and more imperative, because 
this was essentially a political necessity. 

Buddhism - a universal religion 

Buddhism had made the first and yet the greatest 
attempt to propagate a universal religion. ' Go, ye 
Bhikkus, to all the ten directions of the world and 
preach the law of Righteousness ! ' Truly, it was a law 
of Righteousness. It had no ulterior end in view, no 
lust for land or lucre quickening its steps; but grand 
though its achievements were it could not eradicate 
the seeds of animal passions nor of political ambitions 
nor of individual aggrandisement in the minds of all 
men to such an extent as to make it safe for India to 
change her sword for a rosary. Even then, to set an 
example, did India declare her will to ' take more 
pleasure in the conquest of peace and righteousness 
than in the conquest of arms. ' Nobly she tried : Ah ! 
so nobly as to make herself ridiculous in the eyes of 
lust and lucre. Had she not issued. Royal edicts to 


the effect that the very water be strained before it was 
poured out for horses and elephants to drink, so as to 
enable the tiny lives in the waters to escape immediate 
death ? And had she not opened corn^throwing centres 
in the midst of the seas that fish be fed in the oceans 
of the world ? Nor bad the very fish ceased to feed on 
each other ! Nobly did she try to kill killing by getting 
killed - and at last found out that palm leaves at times 
are too fragile for steel ! As long as the whole world 
was red in tooth and claw .and the national and racial 
distinction so strong as to make men brutal, solongif 
India had to live at all a life whether spiritual or poli- 
tical according to the right of her soul, she must not 
lose the strength born of national and racial cohesion. 
So the leaders of thought and action grew sick of 
repeating the mumbos and jumbos of universal 
brotherhood and bitterly complained : 

^far *rfa^rr^ <ti<tt: fr far ^ ^ ipu 

^r^r^nrrrf^ f^#^5T«*ta?tssrcfteRr 11311 (*pn"^r) 

(1 ) Those that were killed by you, O God, and the 
Asuras killed by Vishnu are once again born on 
this earth in the form of the Mlencchas. 

(2) They kill the Brahmans, destroy the religious rites 
like the sacrifices, abduct the daughters of the 
sages ; what sins do they not commit ! 


(3) If" the earth is conquered by the Mlecchas this 
land of the gods will perish, because of the 
abolishing of sacrifices and other religious rites. 


and when the barbarian hordes of the Shakas and the 
Huns - who had ravaged their fair land that had in 
utter confidence clad herself in a Bhikku's dress' 
changed her sword for rosary and had taken to the 
vows of Ahimsa and nonviolence - were expelled 
beyond the Indus and further, and a strong national 
state was firmly established, then it was but natural 
that the leaders of our race should have realised what 
an immense amount of strength could be derived if but 
the new national State was backed up by a Church as 
intensely national. 

Moreover everything that is common in us with 
our enemies, weakens our power of opposing them. 
The foe that has nothing in common with us is the 
foe likely to be most bitterly resisted by us just as a 
friend that has almost everything in him that we 
admire and prize in ourselves is likely to be the friend 
we love most. The necessity of creating a bitter sense 
of wrong and invoking a power of undying resistance 
especially in India that had under the opiates of 
Universalism and non-violence lost the faculty even of 
resisting sin and crime and aggression, could best be 
accomplished by cutting off even the semblance of a 
common worship - a common Church which required 
her to clasp the hand of those as her co-religionists 
whose had been the very hand that had strangled her 


as a nation. What was the use of a universal faith that 
instead of soothening the ferociousness and brutal 
egoism of other nations only excited their lust by 
leaving India defenceless and unsuspecting ? No; the 
only safe-guards in future were valour and strength 
that could only bs born of a national self-conscious- 
ness. She had poured her life's blood for sophistry 
that tried to prove otherwise ! 

Then came reaction ! 

The reaction against universal tendencies of 
Buddliism only grew more insistent and powerful as 
the attempt to re-establish the Buddhist power in 
India began to assume a more threatening attitude. 
Nationalist tendencies refused to barter with our 
national independence and accept a foreign conqueror 
as our overlord. But if that foreign invader happened 
to be favourably inclined towards Buddhism, then 
he was sure to find some secret sympathisers among the 
Indian Buddhists all over India, even as Catholic Spain 
could always find some important section in England 
to sympathise with their efforts to restore a Catholic 
dynasty in England. Not only this but dark hints 
abound in our ancient records to show that at times 
some foreign Buddhistic powers had actually invaded 
India with an express national and religious aim in 
view. We cannot treat the history of this period 
exhaustively h£re but can only point to the half sym- 
bolic and half actual description given in one of our 
Puranas of the war waged on the Aryadeshajas36 by 
the Nyanapati37 ( the king of the Huns ) and his 


Buddhistic allies. The record tells us in a mythological 
strain how a big battle was fought on the banks of the 
river 'Haha,38 how the Buddhistic forces made 
China the base of thcr opera tions,how they were reinfo- 
rced by contingents from many Buddhistic nations : 

36 arnf^Fsrr: 37 ^nrrRr 38 ^r 

[ There appeared for battle a hundred thousand 
soldiers from Shymadesh as also from Japdesh, and 
millions from china. ] 

and how after a tough fight the Buddhists lost it and 
paid heavily for their defeat. They had formally to 
renounce all ulterior national aims against India and 
give a pledge that they would never again enter India 
with any political end in view. The Buddhists as 
individuals had nothing to fear from India, the land of 
toleration, but they should give up all dreams of 
endangering the national life of India and her indepen- 

[ All the Buddhists swore there and then that they 
would not come to the Aryadesh with any territorial 
designs. ] ( Bhavishya-Purana Pratisarga-Parva ) 


Institutions in favour of Nationality 

And thus we find that institutions that were the 
peculiar marks of our nation were revived :- The 
system of four varnas39 which could not be wiped away 
even under the Buddhistic sway, grew in popularity to 
such an extent that kings and emperors felt it a 
distinction to be called one who established the system 
of four varnas40 ^ftHTq"cf aT5n**=r) -'^^s^^m. 
STcJtl^^P * ( TER"cT cTi^a: ) Reaction in favour of this 
institution grew so strong that our nationality was 
almost getting identified with it. Witness the definition 
that tries to draw a line of demarcation between us 
and foreigners 

From this it was but a natural step to prohibit our 
people from visiting shores which were uncongenial-in 
some cases fiercely hostile -to such peculiar institutions 
as these and where our people could not be expected 
to receive the protection that would enable them to 
keep up the spirit and the letter of our faith. Reckless as 
the reaction was, perfectly intelligible when viewed at 
politically ; for do we not frequently meet with 
patriotic thinkers even now in our land who would 
stand for laws prohibiting our men from emigrating to 
nations where they are sure to be subjected to national 
disabilities and dishonours ? 

39 ^ofsq^fm^T^T: I 40 ^l^^T 


Commingling of Races 

Thus it was political and national necessity that 
was at once the cause and the effect of the decline of 
Buddhism in India. Buddhism had its geographical 
centre of gravity nowhere. So it was an imperative 
need to restore at least the national centre of gravity 
that India had lost in attempting to get identified with 
Buddhism. When the nation grew intensely self-con- 
scious as an organism would do and whs in direct 
conflict with the non-self it instinctively turned to draw 
the line of division and mark well the position it 
occupied so as to make it clear to themselves where 
they exactly stood and to the world how they were 
unmistakably a people by themselves-not only a racial 
and national, but even a geographical and political 
unit. On the southern side of our country the natural 
and strategic limits were already reached, sanctioned 
and sanctified. The frame-work of the deep and bounds- 
less seas in which our southern peninsula is set is 
almost poetical in its grace and perfection. The 
Samudrarashana4i had pleased the eyes of generations 
of our poets and patriots. But on the north-western 
side of our nation the commingling of races was 
growing rather too unceremonious to be healthy and 
our frontiers too shifty to be safe. Therefore it would 
have been a matter of surprise if the intense spirit of 
self-assertion that had found so benign an asylum 
under the patronage of the Mahakal of Ujjain had not 

41 jprsrafHT 


made our patriots turn to this pressing necessity of 
drawing a frontier line for us that would be as vivid as 
effective. And what could that line be but the vivacious 
yet powerful stream — the River of rivers-the 'Sindhu' ? 
The day on which the patriarchs of our race had crossed 
that stream they ceased to belong to the people they had 
definitely left behind and laid the foundation of a new 
nation — were reborn into a new people that, under the 
quieting star of a new hope and new a mission, were 
destined by assimilation and by expansion to grow into 
a race and a new polity that could only be most 
fittingly and feelingly described as Sindhu or Hindu 

Back to the Vedas 

Nor was this attempt to identify our frontier line 
with the river Indus an innovation. In fact it was but 
the natural consequence of the great war-cry of the 
national revivalists 'Back to the Vedas. ' The Vedic 
State based on and backed up by the Vedic Church 
must be designated by the Vedic name, and— so far 
as it was then possible — identified with the Vedic lines. 
And this process of events which the very general trend 
of history ^should have enabled us to anticipate seems 
to have actually gone through. For one of patriotic 
Puranas42 assures us that Shalivahan the grandson of 
the great Vikramaditya after having defeated the 
second attempt of foreigners to rush in and expelled 
them beyond the Indus, issued a Royal Decree to the 
effect that thenceforth the Indus should constitute the 

42 JTFT 


line of demarcation between India and other non- 
Indian nations. 

1 There-after the grandson of Vikramaditya, 
Shalivahan, ascended the throne of his forfathers. 

2 Having Conquered the irresistible Shakas, the 
Chinese, the Tartars, the Balhikas, Kamrupas, Romans, 
Khorajas and Shathas and 

3 Having seized their treasures and punishing the 
offenders he demarcated the boundaries of the Aryans 
and the Mlecchas. 

4 The best country of the Aryans is known as 
Sindhusthan whereas the Mlecch country lies beynod the 
Indus. This demarcation was made by that great king. 

(Bhawishya Puran, Pratisarga-Parva) 


The most ancient of the names of our country of 
which we have a record is Saptasindhu or Sindhu. Even 


Bharatvarsha is and must necessarily be a latter designa- 
tion besides being personal in its appeal. The glories of 
a person however magnificent, lose their glamour as 
time passes on. The name that recommends itself by 
appealing to such personal glories and achievements can 
never be so effective and permanent a source of ever- 
rising consciousness of gratitude and pride as a name 
that besides being reminiscent of such national achieve- 
ments and beloved personal touches, is in addition to it 
associated with some great beneficent and perennial 
natural phenomena. The Emperor Bharat is gone and 
gone also is many an emperor as great ! — but the Sindhu 
goes on for ever; for ever inspiring and fertilizing our 
sense of gratitude, vivifying our sense of pride* renovat- 
ing the ancient memories of our race — a sentinal keep- 
ing watch over the destinies of our people. It is the 
vital spinal cord that connects the remotest past to 
the remotest future. The name that associates and 
identifies our nation with a river like that, enlists nature 
on our side and bases our national life on a foundation, 
that is, so for as human calculation are concerned, as 
lasting as eternity. All these considerations must have 
fired the imagination of the then leaders of thought 
and action and made them restore the ancient Vedic 
name of our land and nation Sindhustan — the best 
nation of Aryans.43 

The epithet Sindhusthan besides being Vedic had 
also a curious advantage which could only be called 
lucky and yet is too substantial to be ignored. The word 

43 W*Tpt**T ^TTR*r 


Sindhu in Sanskrit does not only mean the Indus but 
also the Sea-which girdles the southern peninsula— so 
that this one word Sindhu points out almost all 
frontiers of the land at a single stroke. Even if we do 
not accept the tradition that the river Brahma putra44 | s 
only a branch of the Sindhu which falls into flowing 
streams on the eastern and western slopes of the 
Himalayas and thus constitutes both our eastern as 
well as western frontiers, still it is indisputably true 
that it circumscribes our northern and western 
extremities in its sweep and so the epithet Smdhusthan 
calls up the image of our whole Motherland : the land 
that lies between Sindhu and Sindhu — from the Indus 
to the Seas. 

What is Arya45 

But it must not be supposed that the epithet 
Sindhu recommended itself to our patriots only because 
it was geographically the best fitted; for we find it 
emphatically stated that the concept expressed by this 
word was national and not merely geographical' Sindhu- 
sthan was not merely a piece of land but it was a 
nation46 which was ideally if not always actually a 
state (rajnah-rashtram47). It also clearly followed that 
the culture that flourished in Sindhusthan and the citi- 
zens thereof were Sindhus even as they had been in the 
Vedic days. Sindhusthan was the ' Best nation of the 
Aryas' as distinguished from Mlechasthan48 the land 

44 sr^jwr 45 srnf 46 xv& 
47 xm: xr^ 48 *3^^ft. 


of the foreigners. However it must be clearly pointed 
out that the definition is not based on any theological 
hair-splittiug or religious fanaticism. The word Arya is 
expressly stated in the very verses to mean ail those 
who had been incorporated as parts integral in the 
nation and people that flourished on this our side of 
the Indus whether Vaidik^o or Avaidik, Bramhana or 
Chandal, and owning and claiming to have inherited a 
common culture, common blood, common country and 
common polity; while Mlechcha also by the very fact 
of its being put in opposition to Sindhuthan meant 
foreigners nationally and racially and not necessarily 

Hindu & Hindusthan. 

This Royal Decree was as all Royal Decrees in 
Sindhusthan had generally been, the mere executive 
outcome of a strong and popular movement. For, the 
custom of looking upon Attock 50 as the veritable Indian 
land's end as the very word Attock signifies could not 
have been originated and observed so universally and 
so long, had it not been inspired by and appealing to 
our national imagination. This custom that is so 
tenaciously and reverently observed by millions of 
people, premiers and peasants alike, is a good proof 
that strongly corroborates the fact that some such 
royal edict sanctioning the identification of our frontiers 
with the ancient Sindhu and associating the name of 
our land and nation with it as Sindhusthan had actually 

49 tfofr, srtfe^, st^ft, ^fsr^. 50 sr^ 


been issued; and that the highest religious sanctification 
consecrating this royal sanction and popular will must 
have enabled this attempt to restore the Vedic name of 
our country to triumph in the end. Of course centuries 
had yet to pass and momentous events to happen to 
shape and mould the destinies of the words Sindhu and 
Sindhusthan till they came to be as powerfully influential 
as to colour the thought of our whole nation and be the 
cherished possession of our race. But after all they 
have done it and today we find that while thousands 
would not know what Aryawarta or Bharatwarsha 
exactly means yet the very man in the street will under- 
stand and recognize the names Hindu and Hindusthan 
as his very own. * 

*The verses from Bhavishyapuran quoted above 
seem to be quite trustworthy so far as their general 
purport is concerned : Firstly because they record a 
general tradition that, unlike dates or individual 
successions, can easily be remembered longer. Secondly, 
independently of that, the general trend of our history 
as shown points to some such state of affairs. Thirdly, 
it is not necessary here for our arguments to be very 
precise either about the date of this Decree or even the 
king by whom it was issued. And fourthly, the author 
does not seem to have been writing about things only 
haphazardly or to which he is entirely a stranger. For 
the family table that he gives of the House of Vikrama- 
ditya is again given in other part of the work and the 
two agree closely with each other. The writer who 
knows of details about the House is likely to know the 


Reverence to Buddha 

But before we proceed to state what further 
developments the history of this epithet had to undergo 
we feel it incumbent to render an apology to ourselves. 
We have while writing this section wounded our own 
feelings. So we hasten to add that the few harsh words 
we had to say in explaining the political necessity that 
led to the rejection of Buddhism in India should not be 

SALIENT facts of the most distinguished king that 
belonged to it. 

After all, the main resources of our history had 
been and must ever be our national traditions remem- 
bered or recorded in our ancient puranas, epics and 
literature. Their details may be challenged, their dates 
determined and rejected, but on account of discre- 
pancies here or miraculous colouring there which are in 
fact common to all ancient records of mankind, we 
cannot dismiss them altogether, especially where the 
acts recorded have not an impossible or unnatural 
element in them or when they do not contradict events 
otherwise proved to be indisputably true. The habit of 
doubting everything in the Puranas till it has been 
corroborated by some foreign evidence is absurd. The 
sounder process would be to depend on our works 
especially where general traditons and events are 
concerned till they are found to be unreliable in the 
light of any more weighty and less ambiguous evidence 
and not simply on account of the airy imaginings of 
some one to whom it does not seem probable. Take 


understood to mean that we have not a very high 
opinion of that Church as a whole ! No, no ! I am as 
humble an admirer and an adorer of that great and 
holy Sangha the hoiiest the world has ever seen, as any of 
its initiated worshipper. We are not initiated not because 

the case of this Bhavishyapuran itself; because it 
contains some inaccuracies and even absurdities - and 
is Plutarch free from them? Are we to reject the perso- 
nality of Alexander himself because of the supernatural 
touches given to the story of his birth ? Would it be 
reasonable to doubt, say the following verse ? 

[The son of Chandragupta with' leanings towards Budd- 
hism then married the yavani daughter of Sulava, 
Governor of Purus] 

In fact we owe a debt of gratitude to these Puranas 
and Epics for having preserved all ancient and venerable 
records of our people through revolutions which had 
effaced the very traces of whole nations and whole 
civilizations elsewhere in the word. For after all, these 
records of our ancient and partriotic Puranas and His- 
toris (Itihasas) are at any rate more faithful, more 
accurate and more reliable than the modern up-to- 
date western puranas that have such convincing discove- 
ries to their credit as the one which assures us that 
Ramayan sings of the foundation of Vijayanagar or the 
other which asserts that Gautam the Buddha was 
merely the Sun or the Dawn personified ! 


the Sangha is not worthy of us, but because we are not 
worthy of stepping on the footsteps of the Temple 
that has lasted longer because it rested on ideas than 
many a great palace that rested on rocks. The 
consciousness that the first great and the most 
successful attempt to wean man from the brute inherent 
in him was conceived, launched and carried on from 
century to century by a galaxy of great teachers, Arhats 
and Bhikkus who were born in India, who were bred 
in India and who owned India as the land of their 
worship, fills us with feelings too deep for words. And 
if these be our feelings for the Sangha then what shall 
we say about its great Founder, the Buddha, the 
Enlightened ? I, the humblest of the humble of man- 
kind can dare to approach Thee, O Tathagat, with 
no other offering but my utter humility and my utter 
emptiness! Although I feel that I fail to catch the 
purport of thy words yet I know that it must be so. 
Because while thy words are gathered from the lips of 
Gods, mine ears and my understanding are trained to 
the accents and the din of this matter-of-fact world. 
Perhaps it was too soon for thee to sound thy march 
and unfurl thy banner while the world was too young 
and the day but just risen! It fails to keep pace with 
thee and its sight gets dazzled and dimmed to keep the 
radiance of the banner in full view. As long as the 
law of evolution that lays down the iron command 

— ' ^T^TTiR^T TOOT ^f^m^fe*T: I 


[ Immobile forces are the easy prey of the mobile ones 
those with no teeth fall a prey to those with deadly 
fangs; those without hands succumb to those with hands, 
and the cowards to the brave. ] 

is too persistent and dangerously imminent to be 
catagorically denied by the law of righteousness whose 
mottos shine brilliantly and beautifully, but as the 
stars in the heavens do, so long the banner of nationali- 
ty will refuse to be replaced by that of Universality 
and yet, that very national banner hallowed as it is by 
the worship of gods and goddesses of our race, would 
have been the poorer if it could not have counted the 
Shakyasinha under its fold. But as it is, thou art ours as 
truly as Shri Ram or Shri Krishna or Shri Mahavir had 
been and as the words were but the echoes of yearnings 
of our national soul, thy visions, the dreams of our 
race, even so, if ever the law of Righteousness rules 
triumphant on this our human plane, then thou wilt 
find that the land that cradled thee, and the people that 
nursed thee, will have contributed most to bring about 
that consummation if indeed the fact of having contribu- 
ted thee has not proved that much already ! ! 

Hindus : all one and a nation 

So far we have depended upon Sanskrit records in 
tracing the growth of the word Sindhu and we have 
left the thread of our inquiry at the point where 
the growing concept of an Indian nation was found to 
be better expressed by the word Sindhusthan than by 
any other existing words. It was precisely to refute any 


parochial and narrow-minded significance which might, 
as in the case of Aryawarta be attached to this word 
that the definition of the word Sindhusthan was rid of 
any association with a particular institution or party- 
coloured suggestion. For example, Aryawarta was 
according to an authority — 


[ The land where the system of four Varnas does not 
exist should be known as the Mlechcha country : 
Aryawarta lies away from it. ] 

This solution, though legitimate could not be lasting. 
An institution is meant for the society, not the society 
or its ideal for an institution. The system of four 
varnas may disappear when it has served its end or 
ceases to serve it, but will that make our land a 
Mlechchadesha — a land of foreigners ? The Sanyasis5i 
the Aryasamajis, the Sikhqs and many others do not 
recognize the system of the four castes and yet are they 
foreigners ? God forbid ! They are ours by blood, by 
race, by country, by God. ' Its name is Bharat and the 
people are Bharati '52 is a definition ten times better 
because truer than that. We, Hindus, are all one and 
a nation, because chiefly of our common blood — 
< Bharati Santati53 » 

51 *f«mft, smtonsft, ftr<=r 

52 ct *$ vref *rm *rrc<ft ^ tfafcf: 53 ?rrcft *Rrfa: 


Hindusthani Language 

At this period of our history -the rise as well as 
the fall of Buddhism were accompanied by a remark- 
able spread and growth of the vernaculars of India and 
Sanskrit was fast being shut up in the impenetrable for- 
tresses of classical conventionality to such an extent 
that new ideas and new names had to be sanskritized 
before they could be incorporated in any acceptable 
work. Naturally the every day life and the ever chang- 
ing phases of national and social activities gradually 
sought expession through the spoken Prakrit which 
thus grew better fitted to convey the living and throbb- 
ing thoughts of the people in all their freshness and 
vigour and precision. Consequently although the words 
Sindhu and Sindhusthan are at times found in Sanskrit 
works, yet the Sanskrit writers generally preferred the 
word Bharat as being more in consonance with the es- 
tablished canons of elegance. While on the other hand 
the vernaculars stuck almost exclusively to the more 
popular and living name of our land Hindusthan 
(Sindhusthan), instead of the ancient and well-beloved 
names Bharat or Aryawarta. We need not repeat here 
how S in Sanskrit gets at times changed into H in India 
as well as non-Indian Prakrits. So we find the living 
vernacular literature of India full of reference to Hindu- 
sthan or Hindus. Although the Sanskrit language must 
ever remain the cherished and sacred possession of our 
race, contributing most powerfully to the fundamental 
unity of our people and enriching our life, ennobling 
our aspirations and purifying the fountains of our being, 


yet the honour of being the living spoken national 
tongue of our people is already won by that Prakrit, 
which being one of the eldest daughters of Sanskrit is 
most fittingly called Hindi or Hindusthani the language 
of the national and cultural descendants of the ancient 
Sindhus or Hindus. Hindusthani is par excellence the 
language of Hindusthan or Sindhusthan. The attempt 
to raise Hindi to the pedestal of our national tongue is 
neither new nor forced. Centuries before the advent of 
British rule in India we find it recorded in our annals 
that this was the medium of expression throughout India. 
A sadhu or a merchant starting from Rameshwaram 
and proceeding to Hard war, could make himself under- 
stood in all parts of India through this tongue. Sanskrit 
might have introduced him to circles of pandits and pri- 
nces; but Hindusthani was a safe and sure passport to 
the Rajasabhas as well as to the bazaars- A Nanak, a 
Chaitanya, a Ramdas could and did travel up and down 
the country as freely as they would have done in their 
own provinces teaching and preaching in this tongue. 
As the growth and development of this our genuine 
national tongue was parallel to and almost simultane- 
ous with the revival and popularization of the ancient 
names Sindhusthan or Sindhus or Hindusthan or Hindus 
it was but a matter of course that language being the 
common possession of the whole nation should be call- 
ed Hindusthani or Hindi. 

After the expulsion of the Huns and the Shakasthe 
valour of her arms left Sindhusthan in an undisturbed 
possession of independence for centuries on centuries 
to come and enabled her once more to be the land 


where peace and plenty reigned. The blessings of free- 
dom and independence were shared by the princes and 
peasants alike. The patriotic authors go in rapture over 
the greatness and the happiness that marked This long 
chapter of our history extending over nearly a thousand 
years or so. 

tftfr inJr ferefr ^r: ^ ^r faraft *ra: \ 

( Every village has its temple ; in all districts are 
sacrifices performed; every family has plenty of wealth; 
and people are devoted to religion ) 

From Ceylon to Kashmir the Rajputs— -a single 
family of princes — ruled, often connected closely by 
marriages and more closely by the tradition of chivalry 
and culture handed down by a common law. The whole 
life of the nation was being brought into a harmony as 
rich as divine, and the growth of the national language 
was but an outward expression of this inward unity o 
our national life. 

Foreign Invaders 

But as it often happens in history this very undis- 
turbed enjoyment of peace and plenty lulled our 
Sindhusthan, in a sense of false security and bred a 
habit of living in the land of dreams. At last she was 
rudely awakened on the day when Mohammad of Gazni 
crossed the Indus, the frontier line of Sindhusthan and 
invaded her. That day the conflict of life and death 
began. Nothing makes Self conscious of it&ejf so much 


as a conflict with non-self. Nothing can weld peoples 
into a nation and nations into a state as the pressure 
of a common foe. Hatred separates as well as unites. 
Never had Sindhusthan a better chance and a more 
powerful stimulus to be herself forged into an indivisi- 
ble whole as on that dire day, when the great incono- 
clast crossed the Indus. The Mohammedans had crossed 
that stream even under Kasim, but it was a wound 
only skin-deep, for the heart of our people was not 
hurt and was not even aimed at. The contest began in 
grim earnestness with Mohammad and ended, shall we 
say, with Abdalli ? From year to year, decade to decade, 
century to century, the contest continued. Arabia ceased 
to be what Arabia was; Iran annihilated; Egypt, Syria, 
Afghanistan, Baluchistan, Tartary, — from Granada to 
Gazni — nations and civilizations fell in heaps before 
the sword of Islam of Peace ! ! But here for the first 
time the sword succeeded in striking but not in killing. 
It grew blunter each time it struck, each time it cut 
deep but as it was lifted up to strike again the wound 
stood healed. Vitality of the victim proved stronger 
than the vitality of the victor. The contrast was not 
only grim but it was monstrously unequal. It was not 
a race, a nation or a people India had to struggle with. 
It was nearly all Asia, quickly to be followed by nearly 
all Europe. The Arabs had entered Sindh and single- 
handed they could do little else, They soon failed to 
defend their own independence in their homeland and 
as a people we hear nothing further about them. But 
here India alone had to face Arabs, Persians, Pathans, 
Baluchis, Tartars, Turks, Moguls — a veritable human 


Sahara whirling and columning up bodily in a furious 
world storm ! Religion is a mighty motive force. So is 
rapine. But where religion is goaded on by rapine 
and rapine serves as a handmaid to religion, the pro- 
pelling force that is generated by these together is only 
equalled by the profoundly of human misery and 
devastation they leave behind them in their march. 
Heaven and hell making a common cause - such were 
the forces, overwhelmingly furious, that took India by 
surprise the day Mohammad crossed the Indus and 
invaded her. Day after day, decade after decade, 
century aftar century, the ghastly conflict continued 
and India single-handed kept up the fight morally and 
militarily. The moral victory was won when Akbar came 
to the throne and Darashukoh was born. The frantic 
efforts of Aurangzeb to retrieve their fortunes lost in the 
moral field only hastened the loss of the military 
fortunes on the battlefield as well. At last Bhau, as if 
symbolically, hammered the ceiling of the Imperial Seat 
of the Moghals to pieces. The day of Panipat rose, the 
Hindus lost the battle, but won the war. Never again 
had an Afgan dared to penetrate to Delhi. While the 
triumphant Hindu banner that our Marathas had 
carried to Attock was taken up by our Sikhs and 
carried across the Indus to the banks of the Kabul. 

Hindutva at work 

In this prolonged furious conflict our people be- 
came intensely conscious of ourselves as Hindus and 
were welded into a nation to an extent unknown in our 


history. It must not be forgotten that we have all along 
referred to the progress of the Hindu movement as a 
whole and not to that of any particular creed or religi- 
ous section thereof— of Hindu tva54 and not Hinduism 
only. Sanatanists, Satnamis, Sikhs, Aryas, Anaryas, 
Marathas and Madrasis, Brahmins and Panchamas — all 
suffered as Hindus and triumphed as Hindus. Both 
friends and foes contributed equally to enable the words 
Hindu and Hindusthan to supersede all other designa- 
tions of our land and our people. Aryavarta and 
Daxinapatha, Jambudweep and Bharatvarsha55 none 
could give so eloquent an expression to the main 
political and cultural point at issue as the word, Hindu- 
sthan could do. All those on this side of the Indus who 
claimed the land from Sindhu to Sindhu, from the Indus 
to the seas, as the land of their birth, felt that they were 
directly mentioned by that one single expression, Hindu- 
sthan. The enemies hated us as Hindus and the whole 
family of peoples and races, of sects and creeds that 
flourished from Attock to Cuttack was suddenly indivi- 
dualised into a single Being. We cannot help dropping 
the remark that no one has up to this time taken the 
whole field of Hindu activities from A. D. 1300 to 1800 
into survey from this point of view, mastering the 
details of the various now parallel, now correlated 
movements from Kashmir to Ceylon and from Sindh 
to Bengal and yet rising higher above them all to visu- 
alise the whole scene in its proportion as an integral 
whole. For it was the one great issue to defend the 

54 %c3" 55 3rr*r?^ ? sf$T*rm, ^cfcftq", iTF^rq- 


honour and independence of Hindusthan and maintain 
the cultuial unity and civic life of Hindutva and not 
Hinduism alone, but Hindutva. -i. e. Hindudharma 
that was being fought out on the hundred fields of 
battle as well as on the floor of the chambers of diplo- 
macy. This one word, Hindutva, ran like a vital spinal 
cord through our whole body politic and made the 
Nayars of Malabar weep over the sufferings of the 
Brahmins of Kashmir. Our bards bewailed the fall of 
Hindus, our seers roused the feelings of Hindus, our 
heroes fought the battles of Hindus, our saints blessed 
the efforts of Hindus, our statesmen moulded the fate 
of Hindus, our mothers wept over the wounds and 
gloried over the triumphs of Hindus. 

It would require a volume if we were to sub- 
stantiate these remarks by quoting all the words and 
writings of our forefathers that bear on the point. But 
the argument in hand does not allow us to be drawn 
aside even by so alluring a task as that. Consequently 
we must content ourselves with quoting a few 
eloquent lines either from the lips or the pen of some 
of the foremost representatives of our Hindu race. 

Of all the works written in the Hindi language, 
old and new, the great epic Prithviraj Raso56 by 
Chand Bardai is, so far as present researches go, 
admittedly the most ancient and authoritative one. 
There is only one solitary verse which claims to be an 
earlier composition. But luckily and strangely enough 

56 ^^TMtmt 


this very first composition in our northern vernacular 
literature refers to the word Hindusthan, in terms full 
of pride and patriotic fervour. The poet, Ven, father of 
Chand Baradai addresses the Raja of Ajmer, the father 
of Prithviraj — 

3T?<s *v arsrin:, arcs? f^ stcsth 

Chand Baradai who may justly be called the first 
poet of Hindi literature, uses the words Hindi,Hindawan, 
Hind so often and so naturally as to leave no doubt 
of their being quite common and accepted terms as far 
back as the eleventh century, when the Mohammedans 
had not secured any permanent footing even in 
Punjab and therefore could not have influenced the 
independent and proud Rajputs to adopt a degrading 
nickname invented by their foes and make it their 
national and proud appellation. Describing how 
Shahabuddin taken prisoner by the Hindus, was let go 
by the noble Prithviraj on condition that he would not 
again attack the 'Hindus'. Chand says— 

1 vfe <r^rfer <ttP|[ arc* <snzx *rf fasft 
g*r i^t msft 5^r ^ v?% ftsft 
fan* ^rc fa^tflx srrf w$ *gw*% 
*rfcr f^rr srif? ^rf^^r arrsft ^*th^ ' 


But Shahabuddin was not a man to be won over 
by Hindu chivalry. Again and again he sallies forth 
and a fierce fight ensues to the boundless joy of that 
divine cynic Narada : — 

and again ' ^^ % *ft? sr| *sP*T <TTC 
till at last % ^^ 3T«TTf ^T 

But in spite of his efforts to crush the Hindus 
Shahabuddin lost the day and the triumphant news sent 
Delhi mad with joy that Pajjunrai had once more 
taken Shahabuddin a prisoner. The populace greeted 
their king Prithviraj : — 

1 3TT3T TTT*T ^f 3TR ^TT I 

Further pledges solemnly entered by the man who 
had broken his former pledges as solemnly given, 
succeeded in securing the release of the Shah once more 
and once more, but now for the last time, did he invade 
Hindusthan and by a fell swoop was almost at the gate 
of Delhi. The council of war is summoned by the 
Hindapati Prithviraj, insolent challenge is sent by 
Shahabuddin, the Rawals and Samantas are aflame, 


when Chamundrai tells the Mohammedan messenger to 
remind Shah of the dust he had licked and adds : — 

The fatal day drew near and both the sides knew 
it was a desparate game. Chandbaradai almost on the 
eve of the defection of Hameer, approaches the 
Goddess Durga and opens his prayer so pathetic 
and so patriotic thus — 

After having narrated the fateful results of the 
battle and the consequent plot that enabled Shahabuddin 
to strike Prithviraj dead, the poem ends with paying 
a last touching tribute to the fallen Hindu Emperor — 

It is remarkable that although the word Bharat ap- 
pears often in the Raso in the sense of Mahabharat, yet 
it seldom if ever, is used in the sense of Bharatvarsha. 
What we find in this earliest of our northern vernacular 
composition holds good in the latter development of 
our vernacular literature down to the day of the great 
Hindu revival and the war of Hindu liberation. Ramadas, 
the high priest and prophet of that movement, 


in one of his mystical and prophetic utterances sings 
of the vision he has seen and triumphantly but 
thankfully asserts that much of what he has seen in his 
vision has already come to be true — 

3^1% *TCgV TFTt, f^|*?TH TOT^ 

snr^rrsrT wft snsr, srr^w^ff ir 

^W8r ^*r fief, ^T^^r <tt%?t ?rc 
3? wf ^ ^r ^, an^^T^^ff ll % 

Bhushana, the Hindu poet who was one of the 
most prominent of our national bards that went up and 
down the country and roused 'Hindawan' to action 
and achievement in those days of the war of Hindu 
liberation, challenged Aurangzeb — 

* In utter darkness I dreamt: behold, the dreams 
are realised. Hindusthan is up, has come by her own, 


wm ^rr *rs*fte* ^ft ^gt g*r wf *ts cfft ferret u 
Again at another place Bhooshan says : — 

TOSH? STHTft ft?5ft % <Tm*TT|[ fester 

and those that hated her and sinned against God are put 
down with a strong hand ! Verily it is a holy land and 
happy! For, God has made her cause his own and 
Aurangzeb is down ! The dethroned are enthroned and 
the enthroned is dethroned. Actions speak better than 
words ! Verily Hindusthan is a holy land and happy : 
Now that Dharma is backed up by Rajadharma, Right 
by might, the waters of Hind, no longer defiled, can 
enable us once more to perform our ablutions and 
austerities. Let come what may : Rama has made this 
land holy and happy ! 

1. 'Thou art so busy in winning easy victories 
over the poor Hindu friars and beggars there. Why 
dust thou fight so shy to face the Hindpati himself ? 
Thou hast lost fort after fort in the fair field here : that 
is perhaps why thou art distinguishing thyself by 
pulling down unoffending convents, churches and 
chapels there ! Art thou not ashamed to call thyself 
Alamgir, conqueror of the world, when thyself standest 
vanquished by the Hindu Emperor Shivaji ? 


*rfk iPt fa^ % *h ^t ^s^ fa? *r*ft 

*M ?rfa ^ f^r ^teT"% ^rar ^ft^r 

*$M *rfar *f<rfa ^r^crr% 5 sttt^ ^t n ; 
Speaking of things that Shivaji achieved Bhooshan 
says: — 

wfa aftT 5TT^T TT^fT ^ feF*T gf?T *t 

*rair ^t*t TT^ft TT^fr *pjt *rnffif 
^t^fe «^Rt w 5jF?r t" 

It was in this light that the achievements of Shivaji 
and his compatriots were viewed by his race through- 
out Hindusthan. Bhushan though not a Maratha felt 
as proud of the victorious march of the Maratha 
warriors from Shivaji to Bajirao (Vide Bhushan 
Granthavali) as they themselves did. He was Hindu of 
Hindus and till the last day of his life he kept on 
singing his stirring songs, emphasizing the national and 

2. sratoft 3. tot % TCFfaft 4. bri^r 


pan-Hindu aspect of the movement and impressing it 
on the minds of its great leaders. Amongst these 
Chhatrasal, the brave Bundela king, was his second 
favourite: — 

'f^T* ?T£^ STfa, fee 3 *R£* SWfe «Tf 

Nor was this tribute paid to Chhatrasal un- 
deservedly. Chhatrasal was truly like Shivaji, Rajsinha, 
Guru Govindsinha, the 'Dhala Hindavaneki.* He 
Looked upon himself as the champion of 'Hindutva\ 
Says Chhatrasal :- 

' flS <r^ ^ £ ^ 'i fe*w\ %x srer ^fe 3tr 11 
^Fft *jt arg^ qft ^*t 1 %gfic ^for srar^ft #sft it 

^r?fe^ tffcraOr httt# 1 ^ ^nr^ fr^ s^pt n 
*r*r t^t^cT tfk f ^ ^rr# 1 5j^ ^: facr .fey spit 1 1 

3TTS TRTSTgY ^ 5ft^-| g«rfa" 3tfa" sfe W 3ftt 11 '' 

After his historical visit paid by Chhatrasal to 
Shivaji the great Bundela leader, greatly encouraged by 
the latter 

met Sujansinha who was a powerful Rajput chief in 
Bundelkhand. In the conversation that followed Sujan 

1. srer 2. ^2^ 3. TT^rarc 4. *hr. 


sinha draws a moving picture of the political situation 
of the country — 

^TcTHT? 3>rf 5TCT, ffgsW ^>mj 

5r«r # =sfq% ^^ft wpflr, crat <r^ft fta" f^rpflr, 

W sfT c£T ^fe ^tfV S^THt, eft PfiT ^1 ffgl^ <THt 

Sujansinha, the old Raja, saying thus offered his 
sword and heart to Chhatrasal and blessed him and 
his mission — 

star ^r«r *rr*m w i %& n$t ^t^t 3Tfa<5T# 

Tegbahadur, the Great Guru, who not only cham- 
pioned the cause of this war of Hindu liberation in 
Punjab but laid down his life for it, is reported to have 
advised the Brahmins of Kashmir, who oppressed 
and threatened with '[slam or death' solicited his 
help — - 

3*t *£fr fe^g fe*r 5%5 are 3 %*m\*ft 

1. ^sr^RT the historical works that describe the 
events of ^TOT^' s reign, was composed under his 
direct orders by ^T^fe. 


fircr <it# ?r*r gt far ^^ ^ I <T^ *rc^ 

And when he was challenged by the foes of the 
race and religion he boldly answered : — 

fen % 5?r ssft ^m^r^ 1 stf Pt^t^t fet sr^T^T 
ajxTT ?rreft «nf ?*r % 1 3Tfcr fsnwt faro* fa^g' 3 ' 

His illustrious son. Guru Govindsinba, at once the 
poet, prophet and warrior of our Hindu race and our 
Hindu culture, exclaims in a moment of inspiration — 

'*rara ^mcT^r ^rrasT <t*t tt^ 

^ «PT % ST^ VT¥ ?rw n'' 

( ferf^ ^rc^ by <ts tflfasfir^ ) 

2, Oh Brahmins ! Listen, You go and tell the 
Turks ( Mohammedans ) without fear • there is a great 
Hindu leader of ours with lacs of followers. His name 
is Teg Bahadur, Uplifter and awakener of mankind, 
First make him embrace Islam and then we will all do 
the same.' 

3. ' Hearing them, Guru Teg Bahadur, the hero, 
the champion of srf, made re P l Y ' How can I dis- 
grace the Hindu Dharma, so dear to my heart. ' 

1 . ' May this Khalsa Panth flourish every where 
(so that) long may Hindu Dharma live and all 
falsehood vanish ' ! ! 


The chronicler of Shivaji in the old work 
' ferra^Rfi^f ^ft^r ' says < fasrreft^ *Rfa an$, # srrq^ 
% , ^ sf$r*r ^ swTFff ttstto %^t. ^^T^r qter %rfh 

But the shrewd and trusted Dadaji advised :-— 

3Wt^r STTSftefe 3RT3T ST^TT *JWt STScfW 

And' yet Dadaji was the guiding hand of the whole 
movement. The youthful Shivaji writes in 1646 A. D. 

2. Shivaji thought to himself - We are Hindus. 
The Mohammedans have subjugated the entire Deccan. 
They have defiled our sacred places ! In fact they have 
desecrated our religion. We will, therefore, protect our 
religion and for that we would even lose our lives. We 
will acquire new kingdoms by our power and that 
bread we will eat. ' 

3. 'Your plans are certainly very good; but it 
would be exceedingly difficult to carry them to a finish. 
In the first place you are to establish powerful 
centres. Hindu kings and Hindu armies must afford 
assistance from place to place. Again God Almighty 
must be on our side and we must be blessed with the 
benediction of consummate saints. And then these 
things are possible.' 


to one Qfliis young compatriots- 'st^rt* 5^ 3fW& 
<HKfrft *;tft *i%t. aufe f &*& ^sppt. ^tff an*e[tff ^r 

f^ ? 3? <r> irr«t f^fV ^Trs^T ^r^t 5Tfe*rrc an|. | 
TT33T ^iW I «ff% ^R?rtcr qsiT 3tt|.' 

Mr. Rajvade has tJie original copy of this letter 
which reveals, as it were, the soul of the great Hindu 
movement in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. 
It was no parochial movement — it was Hindavi Swarajya 
the Hindu Empire — that was the great ideal which had 
fired the imagination and goaded the actions of Shivaji 
while he was but in his teens. We have his own word 
for it. 

But when Jaysingh — a Rajput prince — came to 
subdue Shivaji and his movement, the c6gt of Shivaji* s 
power of resistance became very naturally blunted. It 
was disheartening in the extreme to find the Rajputs — 
the ancient shieLd of Hindutva — shedding their blood 
and the blood of their co-religionists and brother 
Hindus that the Mohammedans might win ! Says Shivaji 
to Jaysingh — 

1. ' You would not be faithless to the emperor. 
Our primordial family God is self-existing ( and there- 
fore all-powerful ). He has given success to our efforts 
so long and in future also will fulfil the object of my 
life by bringing about the establishment of f^^t ^cpr^r 
(Hindu independence). Indeed it is the cherished wish 
of God that such a kingdom should be established. ' 


TJS^f ffS^f. ffg^TOFFTgS *ft sW STcTSTT W^fta. TO % 

Jaysingh was doubtless touched and replied- 
'sftTTOT 3 ^r^TTf <pffafa. ^T^T^ft <J^V ^?^T ^TT^f. 

snrj^r tr. 3^ f^r. 5^ %w **rm ^t^t m^r^r 
3*irrcr srT^t sr^Tf^ srr^f. ' 

The rise of Hindu power under Shivaji had electri- 
fied the Hindu mind all over India. The oppressed 
looked upon him as an Avatar and a Saviour. Thus we 

2. 'lam ready to hand over to you all fortresses 
you might ask for. I myself will plant your flag on 
them. But let not those Mohammedans triumph. I am a 
Hindu; you are a Rajput and therefore a Hindu. The 
kingdom has originally been of the Hindus. I will 
humble my head a hundred times before one who pro- 
tects the Hindu Religion. But I will never agree to do 
anything that is calculated to impair the honour of the 
Hindu religion.' 

3. ' Emperor Aurangzeb is a very powerful sove- 
reign. You should therefore agree to make terms with 
him. You will not be able to live in peace by maintain- 
ing hostile relations with him. We Princes of Jaipur, 
are Hindus; you are also a Hindu. We are in accord with 
you since you are out to rehabilitate Hindu religion. ' 


find that the people of the Savnoor district groaning 
under the Mohammedan yoke appeal to him : — 

'*ffa*rife fasr ^f ; arn^ ^tt% ^raraT^I: ^mrcrrcr ^fera^f. 

3 f fft %^T^ tf^UT^. *?5^t% 5TRFF. ^^T^T ^+2 
3TT^t. g^T^f sn^flf STT^ff t^t 3TT5T% 5TTT ^^ ^S^ft 

Again after Sbivaji had restored the Jagir to his 
brother Vyankoji at Tanjore on condition that he 
should cease to recognize the sovereignty of the 
Mohammedan sway. Shivaji writes : — 

Rajaram in order to express his sense of apprecia- 
tion of the national services of Santaji and his brothers 

1- 'This Yusuf is a very wicked fellow. He op- 
presses the women and the children, commits atrocities 
and even resorts to such reprehensible misdeeds as the 
slaughter of cows. We are so disgusted that we can no 
longer live under him. You are the restorer of the 
Hindu religion and the destroyer of the Mlechhas 
( foreigners ). It is therefore that we have come to you 
for refuge. And since we have so approached, guards 
have been stationed at our gates. In fact they are intent 
on starving us here without food and water. So do 
come with all haste, ( lit. by turning nights into davs ). 

2. * Those who are bitter haters of Hindus should 
have no footing in your territory. ' 


in the war of independence, conferred on Bahiroji the 
high and proud appellation 'Hindurav'. When the siege 
at Jinji was pressing the Maratha forces to try their 
best to break through it an attempt was made to win 
over the Marathas in the services of the Moghal 
commander: — 

1 ^TFTtsft s TF# 3t^t *f *TH %^. 5^ anT^t tpp 

*ft€ ^5^T ^T^TcT \ooo qft^pRff ^ fe^ I *rWt% 

ig$ffz&\as ^1%, 'ejT^f ftprjspm %^ ?r^Nr srm^fr cft^r jw 

1. ' Secret negotiations were opened with Nagoji 
Raje to the effect that if he joined with the Marathas 
they would break the enemy's forces and preserve the 
Hindu religion. He should therefore, come over to 
them ' Thereupon Nagoji Raje gave up service under 
the Mohammedans and withdrawing the attack entered 
the city with his battalion numbering five thousand 

when Shirke entered the service of the Moghuls 

(as Sambhaji had beheaded the Shirke family). Khan- 
doji Ballal said, * Shirkes had been beheaded : but 
similarly three of my ancestors were killed by being 
trampled under the foot of an elephant. But we are 
striving for the establishment of the kingdom of the 
Hindus and you must be our partners-' Then, Shirke 
also entered the plot and helped the Marathas with the 
result that Rajaram broke through the siege and 


5T *ra5mS fao^T frrsftf^ TTSTrcm ^TSett %^TS cftf* 

gz* Oft. ' 

Shahu had once entered into a controversy with 
Jayasinha (Sawai) on the point * What have I done and 
what you have done to protect the Hindu Religion ! * 

The same spirit animated the generations of Baji- 
rao and Nanasaheb/ Says the historian: — 

%^^r feRft. sr^fe ^rnft, *ftPre ^fem* ?nfc ^nn qm 

STTcff apffc ^FT ?'* (5FT5fhT5T) 

1 . It appears that others also followed or supple- 
mented Bajirao in the great work undertaken by him 

The above idea of Hindupadpadshahi (Hindu 

Sovereignty) was animating the hearts of such saints as 
Brahmendra Swami, Govind Dixit and others who had 
been going over the country on pilgrimages and acquir- 
ing experience. They were imparting instructions to 
their disciples with the same idea. Bajirao himself says. 
'Why do you tarry ? Rush vigorously and attack ; and 
Hindupadpadshahi (Hindu Kingdom) is at hand ! ' 



Brahmendra Swami was the central figure of the 
intellectua Is of the period. 'TCJ f^l^m zr*%Z sqT 
TT^t^r ^tcft cirf^r re^r ^nfte zftTir crra& *n$ %pTT 

^t *T>£ c^TT^t SIT^T *RtcT TRf^T feft.^ 

( *n£errf ) 
Mathurabai writes to this Swami : — 
' sfsRTsft jftF^ar, *r<TtsfY ftr^, ^"tat m^^r, Tmisft 

The letters sent by this brave lady, Mathurabai 
Angre, are all so full of patriotic fervour and force 
that they deserve a perusal by all those who want to 
catch the real spirit of the great Hindu revival. 

2. But the Swami did not think it proper to meet 
one in whose territory Hindu Religion was being 

defiled ! He impressed upon Shahu *s mind how 

disgraceful it was that Deities and Brahmins should be 
subjected to atrocities in the territory of Hindus ! * 

( Sardesai ) 

3, Shankaraji Mohite, Ganoji Shinde, Khandoji 
Nalkar, Ramaji Kharade, Krishanaji Mod and other 
powerful sardars have preserved the kingdom, extermi- 
nated the Mohammedans and protected the Hindu reli- 
gion in Konkan. 


The Portuguese fanaticism at Goa was an Indian 
edition of the Inquisition in Europe. Once they pro- 
hibited the open observation of all Hindu religious 
rites and rituals. Then the public-spirited Antaji 
Raghunath defied the order and encouraged other 
Hindus to do the same. But he knew perfectly well that 
impotent passive resistance is impotent suffering. To 
be successful under such conditions as then prevailed it 
must be backed up by the sword of a Bajirao or a 
Chimnaji. It was Antaji Raghunath who brought about 
the revolution in the Portuguese territories in India, 
enlisted the sympathies of all Hindu leaders on the side 
of Bajirao and in fact was the prime mover who 
brought about the Maratha invasion which ended in the 
liberation of almost all the Hindu territories after the 
triumphant compaign of Chimnaji Appa. 

But in the meanwhile and before the fall of Bassein 
(Vasai) Nadirshah invaded India and Delhi fell in 
his hands. The Maratha agents of Bajirao write to 
him : — 

' afFn*q$^raT?r ^t ^r *u%t aft <T«ft ^t^ ^Tste. 
arsrcssareflf %&® ^fte. *^pt mcRrc ^Preff «rrif. smfi 

3TPTT ^* *fteT ?TR SWfaaT qif^. qifTOTTfT iTTmTT 

^rr^r ?rr?V. f^TT^refr fa%* Trari% (^Taft sraftnr) 

*f$t Ti*nwte ^rearer stc^tW arft an|. Ttg^ sreraft snfe- 
sr^r *2ntfr% ^rfhft *n*facfterr ^rra; ^rfft^r jfesr^ 


fKTH" *nz ^ <rffer feffaft vtzzr qzn^dft snq-ur 

(Dhondo Govind's letters to Bajirao) 

But as Vasai was still holding out Bajirao could 
not go in time. He was chafing under his inabilites. He 
writes : — 

1 f^t^RT Mtt «ftT sttrt ?rr^ 3tt|. argrre tosRt srreft 
qrff. atsro <TTT*r *rasV <?ftar ar^ fftspr s qir«ft<TK s^f ?*mr 

( ^Tf^Tm ) Sf^Pt $3f %3f Sfq- 3T*TT fa^R 3TT|. * 

1. Tahmaspkulikhan (Nadirshah) is not a divine 
being so as to be able to destroy the whole creation. 
He is bound to come to terms with those that prove 
strong. Therefore Your Excellency ( Bajirao ) should 
come with a strong force. Peace can come only after a 
war. We can expect a decisive result if Your Excellency 
and the entire Rajput chiefs combine now. We must 
join together all the Hindus including Bundele and 
such others and we must present a more than brilliant 
front. Nadirshah does not intend to go back. He will 

directly march on the Hindu kingdoms Savai Jaysing 

wants that Ranaji ( of Udepur ) should be installed on 
the Imperial throne. The Hindu Kings including Savai 
are looking for the arrival of Your Excellency. In fact 
as soon as Your Excellency can give a strong backing 
Savaiji will send forces against Delhi and will also 
himself march.' ( Dhondo Govind's letters to Bajirao ) 

1. The Hindus are placed in a critical situation. 
We have not yet captured Bassein Under the 


But his indomitable spirit rose triumphant over 
all obstacles; He writes again : — 

' STT-q^ft W^\ m^ (T^ft^f ^ft^ ^\\ ) ^T^T 

Tfq- TT^ 37 ^ifew^T ^*TT ^T^f ^cft eft ! ' * 

(Bajirao's letter) 

Sawai Jaysinha was as intensely proud of his 
Hindutva as any one else of the great leaders of the 
Hindu movement. It was he who directed the people 
— the oppressed Hindus — in Malva to request Baji- 
rao to extend the war of Hindu liberation to Malva 
and thus to take a further important step towards the 
realization of the mission of the generation of the follo- 
wers of the Shivaji cult all over India — the mission of 
Hindupadpadshahi. In one of his letters the enlightened 
and patriotic Rajput prince writes : — 

circumstances all the Maratha armies should combine 
and cross the river Chambal. The plan is that he 
(Nadirshah) should not be allowed to proceed further. 
( Bajirao to Brahmendra Swami) 

2. We must lay aside our internal differences 
(such as punishment of Raghoji and others). The 
whole of Hindusthan has now one common enemy to 
encounter. As for myself I have decided to cross the 
Narbada and spread the Maratha armies as far as 
Chambal and we shall see how Nadirshah proceeds 
southward. ( Bajiro's letter). 


^nsft *ft arm?* fe^ | ft? «rrc^i% ^5T3ft ^r |, eft 

Again he writes : — i ^\\ 3TT3TO | STTT *T3" *n«y% 

^ ^fe |t?rr farcr srr<r fa^rc ^tt *rr^*f *r TO^m^ff vt 
Tt*te fat, sfk %w ^r^r^r t^t i ' 

(Jaysingh's letters 26-10-1721 A. D.) 

Nanasaheb the son of Bajirao was in fact the 

greatest leader of men that the great movement of 

Hindu liberation and Hindupadpadshahi brought to 

the front. His correspondence is a study by itself. 

L May you get success and wealth! ...Respect- 
ful greetings to Nandlalji Pradhan and Bhaiji Thakur, 
Sansthan Indore, from Maharajadhiraj Jaising, camp 
Amargad. You are informed that the Emperor has 
started operations. But you need not be anxious. God 
Almighty will bring the matters to a successful issue 
We have secured from Bajirao Peshve solemn promises 
concerning you. 

Oh splendid I Really creditable. It is meet and 
proper that you &nd the other chiefs of Malva unite 
and bring about the prosperity and grbwth of the 
Hindu religion. It was with this object that the 
Musalmans were descouraged from Malva and the 
Hindu religion was preserved intact. 


Wherever we find him, we find him %he e%ampion of 
Hindutva. To Tarabai he writes : — ' jftiM %^T^ ff^- 

qWTcT^T 3W ! ' 2 (Nanasaheb's letters) 

Though much was lost on the field of Panipat, 
yet all was not lost. For two men survived the battle 
and saved the cause. Nana Farnavis and Mahadaji 
Shinde — the brain, the sword, the shield of the Hindu 
Power — thought and worked and fought for 40 years 
or so — in spite of the disastrous defeat at Panipat or 
rather in virtue of it — for that defeat was the greatest 
blow that the victors had ever received and 
succeeded in making the Hindus the de facto Rulers 
of Hindusthan. How conscious the national mind had 
grown of the triumphant turn events had taken and 
how inte jsely proud had they been of Hindutva and the 
Hindu Empire all but established can best be seen in 
the letters of the most talented diplomatic writers of 
that period. Govindrao Kale writes to Nana Fadnavis 
from the capital of the Nizam on learning the news 
that gladdened the Marathas from end to end of Maha- 
rashtra that the misunderstanding growing between 
the two men Nana and Mahadaji had disappeared : — 

2. The Moghul (Nizam) is an inveterate enemy of 
the Hindu power, and yet, while yoti are yourself 
carrying on negotiations with them you accuse (me) 
your humble servant of crooked ways ! 

(Nanasaheb's letters) 


f^^ciTT <nff fatfY fofr ? *«r% w«r *Rra sn^. src^ ^% 

^<=?TT?ft (cTR^qT 3f5F3rpfif) ffeRTJT^f TT^T ^fcr$. 3T^ 
3n^*rf*TTT% ^TCfMfa JTrft^ftcTRr *TTt cft^T ?FR ^SflTT ^^T 

RF fepfffcT ^T^TT^t ftRT*fr t^RT^T ^TO* 3" 

wtrafr f^rrl*. c*tr? frfaq; ^>*tr ***ksr*r %S. 3! 
*f, arifr ^«ff stt& m$. %&& *fofcrt% ynrsr^^fr sr 
*rcm 3tt^. qtg m& «rcf ? sttrt stt^ ^t^Mr $***rtt ?tzb\. 

1. When I read your letter I was simply thrilled 
with joy. Indeed I felt mightily happy. I cannot express 
all that fully in a letter. Literally my mind was flooded 
with thoughts. All the territory from the river Attock to 
the Indian Ocean is the land of Hindus and not of the 
Turks. These have been our frontiers from the times of 
Pandavas down to those of Vikramaditya. They pre- 
served and enjoyed it. After them the rulers turned out 
to be quite effete and the Yavanas (Mohammedans) 
rose in power. The Moghuls seized the Kingdom of 
Hastinapur. And eventually during the regime of 
Alamgir we were reduced to such straits that the wearer 


^ft^^T^V. 3rri% f^fjr wnsa^ mtft ararat 3^tr *t 
^■rt | ^rar 3rr|. 3T^^r *fret ^sctt. iptcNtt *rkt ^ 

&fo?T ^THT ^t^ft ffEgpmtcT fa^T ^*J*ft cqt^T 

sf^t^cT ^F^rfsprrfir 5^ 3<nfftr «mW g^r an|. *fts 
3^t| cf 3^r qi^ 3TTfar aprar \*z ?nw was, sttctt ifiret 

^■F3r^r ? cr^rr *T>zt 3tt|cT. | fawr ^Ehrratfr ^^ shwt «t 

3nt^. 4?r fr3^f. amor fef^zrm^r tt^t *mw stt$ 


of every Yandyopavita (the sacred thread) was required 
to pay a jijeya tax of Rs. 3-8 and to buy cooked food. 

At such a juncture was born Shivaji Maharaj, the 
founder of the era and the protector of the religion. 
However his mission was confined to a limited area. 
Then came Nanasaheb and Bhausaheb of respected 
memory. Heroes of such pre-eminent prowess that the 
like of them have not been born. And now everything 
has been restored to us under the benign and illustrious 
auspices of Shrimant (Peshve ) owing to the astuteness 
and valour of Patil Boa. But how was all this achieved! 
Because we had won we thought it had been an easy 


This one single letter penned with such ease and 
grace gives a truer expression to the spirit of our 
history than many a dull volume had done. How 
spontaneously it hits on the right derivation of the epi- 
thets Hindu and Hindusthan and how completely our 
ancestors down to the last generation loved and reve- 
renced and identified themselves with these epithets is 
so eloquently illustrated in this letter as to render it 
superfluous to cite any more. 

Stupid notions must go 

Having thus tried to trace the successive chapters 
of the history of the words Hindu and Hindusthan 
from the earliest Vedic period to the fall of the last of 
our Hindu empire in 1818 A. D., we are now in a posi- 
tion to address ourselves to the main task of determin- 
ing the essentials of Hindutva. The first result of our 
enquiry is to explode the baseless suspicion which has 

matter. If it had been the case of Mohamedans, volumes 
of histories would have been written about it* Amongst 
the Mohammedans even the smallest matter is extolled 
by them to the skies. While amongst us Hindus we are 
inclined not even to refer to our exploits however 
magnificent they may be. Indeed results difficult to 
achieve have been achieved. The Mohammedans think 
and say that the accursed Hindus have established 
their supremacy ! 

And really Patil Boa has broken the heads of those 
who tried to raise them. In fact the unachievable has 
been achieved. To establish order and reap its benefit 


crept into the minds of some of our well-meaning but 
hasty countrymen that the origin of the words Hindu 
and Hindusthan is to be traced to the malice of the 
Mohammedans ! After all that has been said in the pre- 
vious paragraphs about the history of these words, this 
suspicion seems so singularly stupid that to mention it 
is to refute it. Long before Mohmmad was born, nay, 
long before the Arabians were heard of as a people, 
this ancient nation was known to ourselves as well as to 
the foreign world by the proud epithet Sindhu or 
Hindu and Arabians could not have invented this term, 
any more than they could have invented the Indus itself. 
They simply learnt it from the ancient Iranians, Jews, 
and other peoples. But apart from all serious historical 
refutation, is it not clear that had it been really a contem- 
ptuous expression of our foes as it is said to be could 
it have ever recommended itself to the bravest and best 

like the great kings is still ahead. I am afraid our 
merits will fail and the work will be spoiled. The 
achievements are not limited to the acquisition of terri- 
tory and regaining of our kingdom, but include the 
preservation of Vedas and Shastras, rehabilitation of 
religion, protection cows and Brahmins, establishment 
of suzerainty and the diffusion of our fame and victory. 
To keep all this intact depends on you and Patil 
Boa. If there is difference amongst you the enemy 
is bound to grow strong. Now my misgivings are at 
rest. It was really splendid ! Very excellent ! The ene- 
mies are besetting us on all sides. I was, very uneasy. 
Your letter has been a relief to me ( 1793 A. D. ). 


of our race ? Surely out people were not quite such 
strangers either to the Arabic or Persian tongues! The 
Mohammedans were apt to refer to us as Kafar also but 
had our people adopted that name and stuck to it. as a 
distinguishing mark ? Why did they submit voluntarily 
to the national insult only in the case of the other 
epithets Hindusthan and Hindu ? Simply because, they 
knew more of our national traditions and were less cut 
off from our national life than some of us had been. 
That is why some of us keep constantly harping on the 
fact that this word Hindu is not found in Sanskrit. 
What of this word alone ? - The Sanskrit literature 
makes no mention of Kishan-Banaras-Maratha-Sikh 
Gujarat-Patna-Sia-Jamuna and a thousand other words 
that we use daily. But are they to be traced to some 
foreign source ? The word Banaras though not found 
in Sanskrit is still ours because it is the Prakrit form 
of Varanasi which is found in Sanskrit. In fact it is 
ridiculous to expect a Prakrit word in classical 
Sanskrit Nay more ; although Hindu being a Prakrit 
form of a Sanskrit word, should not be expected to be 
found in Sanskrit, yet as it is it cannot be but a 
weighty proof of its importance even in its Prakrit 
form that, that form should be at times met with in 
Sanskrit literature : for example, the Bherutantra uses 
this word, Hindu. Great Sanskrit lexicographers like 
Apte in Maharashtra and Taranath Tarkavachaspati 
in Bengal have also mentioned it. While the line 
1 Shivashiva na Hindur na Yavanah5?' is too well 
known to be quoted. 

57 ftrei%3" *r ffpjif m^i \ 


It may be that in the modern Mohammedanized 
Persian some contemptuous meaning has come to be 
associated with the term Hindu but how does that 
show that the original signification of Hindu was 
contemptuous and meant 'black' ? The words Hindu 
or Hind are used in Persian but they do not mean black 
and yet we know that they along with Hindu are 
originated from the same Sanskrit word Sindhu or 
Sindh. If the word Hindu is applied to us because it 
means ' black ' then is it that Hind and Hindi are also 
applied to us though they do not mean 'a black man ' ? 
The fact is that the word Hindu dates its origin not 
from the Mohammedanized Persian but from the ancient 
language of Iran, the Zend, and then the Saptasindhu 
meant Saptasindhu alone- It could not have been applied 
to us because we were black literally, for the simple 
reason that the ancient Saptasindhu i. e. Hindus 
in Avestic period were as fair as the Iranians and 
lived practically side by side and even at times together 
with them. Even so late as the dawn of the Christian 
era the Parthians used to call our frontier province as 
Shvetabharat or White India. Thus originally Hindu 
simply could not have literally meant a. black man. 

In fact, after it has been made so amply clear 
in the foregoing sections that the epithets Hindu 
and Hindusthan had been the proud and patriotic 
designations signifying our land and our nation long 
before the Mohammedans or Mohammedanized Persians 
were heard of it becomes almost immaterial so far as 
the greatness of epithet Hindu and its claim to our love 
are concerned, what meaning, complimentary or contem- 


ptuous, is attached to it by some swollen-headed 
fanatic here and there. There was a time when the 
term 'England' had fallen so low in England itself in 
the estimation of her Norman conquerors that it 
became a formula of swearing against each other ! 
' May I become an Englishman ! ' was the strongest 
form of self-denunciation and calling a Norman ' an 
Englishman ' an unpardonable insult. But did the 
English care to change the name of their land or their 
nation and call it Normandy instead of England ? 
Or would their disowning their name * the English ' 
have made them great ? No ; on the contrary, precisely 
because they did not disown their ancient blood or 
name, to-day we find that while the word Norman has 
become an historical fossil and Normandy has no place 
on the map of the world, the contemptuous English 
and their English language have come to own the 
largest empire the world has yet seen ! And yet great 
as the glories of the English world are, what on the 
whole, has it to show to match the glories of the 
Hindu world? 

In times of conflict nations do lose their balance 
of mind and if the Persians or others once understood 
by the word Hindu a thief or a black man alone then 
let them remember that the word Mohammedan too 
was not always mentioned to denote any very enviable 
type of mankind by the Hindus either. To call a mana 
Musalman or better still a ' Musanda ' was worse than 
calling him a brute. Such bitter fulminations and 
mutual recriminations though they might have the 
excuse of inevitability in times of life and death 


struggles while the fume and flame of the angry brutal 
passions last, should be forgotten as soon as men 
recover from their fits and claim to be recognized as 
gentlemen. Nor should we forget that the ancient Jews 
used the term Hindu to denote strength or vigour. 
For these were the qualities associated with our land 
and nation. In an Arab epic named, ' So hab Mo 
Alakk ' it is said that the oppression of kith and kin are 
bitterer or more fatal than the stroke of a Hindu 
sword; while 'returning a Hindu answer' is a pro- 
verbial way with the Persians themselves, by which they 
are said to mean ' to strike bravely and deeply with an 
Indian sword'. The ancient Babylonians had been in 
the habit of denoting the finest quality of cloth as 
Sindhu because it generally came from the Saptasindhus 
— a custom which also shows that they also knew our 
country by its ancient name Sindhu ; nor have we as yet 
heard of any other meaning being attributed to this 
word in the ancient Babylonian language than its 
national one. 

No Hindu can help feeling proud of himself at 
the curious interpretation put upon this epithet by the 
illustrious traveller, Yuan Chwang, himself belonging 
to our highly civilized and ancient neighbours, the 
Chinese, when he identifies our national name 'Hindu' 
with the Sanskrit, 'Indu' and says in justification that 
the world had rightly called this nation Indus' for they 
and their civilization had like the moon ever been a 
constant source of delight and refreshment to the 
languid and weary soul of man. Does not all this 
clearly show that the way of inspiring respect for our 


name in the minds df men is not either to change or 
deny it but to compel recognition of, and homage to it 
by the valour of our arms, purity of our aims and the 
sublimity of our souls? Even if we allow some of our 
brethren to ride their hobby horse in all glee and get 
themselves recognized and registered in the census 
reports as 'Aryans 1 instead of as Hindus, yet they could 
only succeed in dragging down the word 'Aryan' to their 
own level and adding one more synonym to the 
vocabulary of the words for a 'helot' and a 'cooly\ as 
long as our natipn does not attain to the heights of 
greatness and of strength as in the days of yore. 

But apart from any serious argument against the 
absurd proposal of denying the epithets, Hindu or 
Hinduism, and granting for a while the stupid theory 
that their origin is to be traced to the malice of foreig- 
ners, we simply ask * Is it possible to deny them and coin 
a new word for our national designation?' As it stands at 
present the word Hindu has come to be the very banner 
of our race and the one great feature that above all 
others contributes to strengthen and uphold our racial 
unity from Cape to Kashmir, from Attock to Cuttack. Do 
you think you can change it as easily as a cap ? Once it 
happened that a gentleman, well-meaning and patriotic 
intended to get himself registered in the census records as 
an Aryan instead of as a Hindu, as. he had been a victim 
to the wide-spread lie that we were first called Hindus 
by the Persian Mohammedans out of their contempt— 
that the word meant a thief or a black man. Yet, I 
could not enter into any detailed discussion about the 
origin of the word for want of time and so simply quest i- 


oned him as to what his own name was. He replied it was 
'Taktasinghps "My good friend," I continued, "unlike 
the word Hindu whose origin is at the worst disputable, 
your name is indisputably a hybrid word and should 
therefore be first replaced in the register by some ancient 
and purely Aryan word, say Niaudgalayan59 or Simha- 
sansinha."60 Having evaded the point for a w 7 hile he 
tried to point out how difficult it was to do so aiid how 
it would completely upset his economical position and 
after allhow could he get the world to call him by the 
new-fangled name or what could be gained at all by this 
risky experiment of calling himself 'Sinhasansinh 5 while 
all others persisted in calling him Taktasinha 'But', I 
rejoined. 4 if to change your individual name, which is 
indisputably foreign, seems to you so difficult, nay, harm- 
ful, then, my friend, how much more difficult would it be 
to change the name of a whole race which is so far from 
being a foreign invention that it is ours as much as the 
Vedas are ours ? And how much more futile V Of the 
futility of any such attempt to change a deep-rooted 
name, a far more convincing example than this personal 
one is furnished by our Sikh brotherhood in the Punjab. 
The band of the best and bravest of the Hindu race 
whom our Great Guru had chosen, triumphantly 
exclaiming, "The blue clothes are torn; the domination 
of the Turks and the "Pathans is over.^i For the 
expressed purpose of 62 the continuation of protec- 
tion of religion, protection the saints, destruction of the 

58 tfwftr^ 59 *far*r<swr 60 fa^r^Rftr? 

61 ?fte ^3% ^<r£ <fili 3T3F q^Tuft 3r*r«ff jtitt 


wicked, for this purpose I am born on this earth, 
62 The class of warriors have given up their duty, and 
have adopted the language of the Mlechchas. AH are 
reduced to the one class of serfs. People have lost their 
faith." The great Guru63 was daily greeted with a 
64 ' Vah Guruji ki Fateh « Vah Gurujika Khalsa ! ' The 
words Darbar, Diwan-Bahadur, have crept like thie- 
ves to the very heart of our Harimandirs. They are the 
scars of our old wounds. The wounds are healed but 
the scars persist and seem to be incorporated with our 
form. As long as any attempts to scratch them out 
threaten to harm us more than profit, all that we can 
do is to tolerate them ; for after all they are the scars 
of the wounds received in a conflict that we have won 
in a gory field in which we remained as the victors of 
the day. 

And yet, if any words, however closely they might 
have been associated with things sacred, are to be 
disowned and changed they are these, for they all are 
indisputably foreign and reminiscent of alien domi- 
nation. Does it not seem almost insincere that we who 

62 «nt 'TOPFT *RT 3STTT*r, |5£ f^ft *{& OTT2T,- arf? sRSf 


can not only tolerate but love these names, should 
clamour to disown the epithet, Hindu or Hindusthan, 
which is the very cradle name of our race and of our 
land chosen by our patriarchs, recorded in the most 
ancient and revered annals of the world, the Vedas ? 
— An epithet which had proudly been borne by millions 
of our countrymen on both sides of the Sindu for the 
last forty centuries if not more; which expanded to and 
embraced the whole of our country from Kashmir to the 
Cape and from Attock to Cuttack; which sums up in 
a word the whole geographical position of our race and 
our land, Sindhu or Hindu; which had been recognized as 
the sign of distinction to mark out 'The be^t nation 
of the Aryans/ an epithet for which our foes hated us 
and for which our warriors from Shalivahan to Shivaji 
went forth in their thousands to keep up their fight 
from century to century. It was this word, Hindu that 
was found impressed on the ashes of Padmini and 
Chitor. It was this word, Hindu, that was owned by 
Tulsidas, Tukaram, Ramkrishna and Ramdas. Hindu- 
padpadshahi was the dream of Ramdas, the mission of 
Shivaji, the pole star of the ambitions of Bajirao and 
Banda Bahadur, of Chhatrasal and Nanasaheb, of 
Pratap and Pratapaditya. It was inscribed on the banner 
defending which a hundred thousand Hindu heroes 
fell inflicting fatal wounds on the foes on the battle- 
field of Panipat— and Bhau at the head of them all, 
sword in hand ! — within one single day ! It was for (he 
Hmdupadpadshahi that inspite of all that martyrdom 
and in virtue of it, Nana and Mahadji steered the 
nation clear of all rocks and shoals and brought it 


almost within sight of the coveted shores. It is this 
epithet Hindu or Hind us than that, even to this day, 
owns a loving allegiance of millions of our people 
from the throne of Nepal to the begging bowl in the 
street. To disown these words is like cutting off and 
casting away the very heart of our people. You would 
be dead before you do that. It is not only fatal but futile. 
To oust the words, Hindu or Hindusthan, from the 
position they hold is to try to oust the Himalayas from 
theirs. Nothing but an earthquake with all its terrible 
wrenches and appalling uncertainties can accomplish 

The objection that is levelled against the appella- 
tions, Hiudu and Hindusthan on account of the mistaken 
notion which attributed their origin to foreign sources 
could, if left to itself, be easily laid low by advancing 
indisputable historical facts. But as it is, this objection 
is in some cases backed up by a secret fear that if the 
epithet be honoured and owned, then all those who do 
so would be looked upon as believers in the dogmas 
and religious practices that go by the name 'Hinduism'. 
This fear, though it is not often admitted openly, that 
a Hindu is, necessarily and by the very fact that he is 
a Hindu, a believer in the so-called Hinduism, makes 
many a man determined not to get convinced that the 
epithets are not an alien invention. Nor is this fear 
totally unjustified. But it would be more candid if 
those who entertain this fear should openly advance it 
as the ground of their objection to being recognized as 
Hindus and not try to hide it under a false and unten- 
able issue. The superficial similarity between these two 


terms Hindutva and Hinduism is responsible for this 
regrettable estrangement that, at times, alienates well- 
meaning gentlemen in our Hindu brotherhood. The 
distinction between these two terms would be presently 
made clear. Here it is enough to point out that if there 
be really any word of alien growth it is this word 
Hinduism and so we should not allow our thoughts to 
get confused by this new-fangled term. That a man 
can be as truly a Hindu as any without believing even in 
the Vedas as an independent religious authority is quite 
clear from the fact that thousands of our Jain brethren, 
not to mention others, are for generations calling 
themselves Hindus and would even to this day feel hurt 
if they be called otherwise. We refer to this simply as 
an actual fact apart from any detailed justification and 
examination of it which would presently follow. Till 
then, we hope our readers would not allow prejudicial 
fear regarding the conclusion of our argument as to its 
intrinsic merit and bear in mind that we have through- 
out the foregoing pages been dealing not with any 
'ism' whatever but with Hindutva alone in its national 
and cultural aspects- 

Now we are fairly in a postion to try to analyse 
the contents of one of the most comprehensive and 
bewilderingly synthetic concept known to human tongue. 
Hindutva is a derivative word from Hindu, we have 
seen that the earliest and the most sacred records of our 
race show that the appellation, Saptasindhu or Hapt- 
Hindu was applied to a region in which the Vedic 
nation flourished. The geographical sense being the 
primary one has, now contracting, now expanding, but 


always persistently been associated with the words Hindu 
and Hindus than till after the lapse of nearly 5000 years 
if not more, Hindusthan has come to mean the whole 
cotinental country from the Sindhu to Sindhu from the 
Indus to the Seas. The most important factor that 
contributes to the cohesion, strength and the sense of 
unity of a people is that they should possess an inter- 
nally well-connected and externally well-demarcated 
4 local habitation, ' and a ' name ' that could, by its very 
mention, rouse the cherished image of their mother- 
land as well as the loved memories of their past. We are 
happily blessed with both these important requisites 
for a strong and united nation. Our land is so vast and 
yet so well-knit, so well demarcated from others and 
yet so strongly entrenched that no country in the world 
is more closely marked out by the fingers of nature as a 
geographical unit beyond cavil or criticism, as also is the 
name Hindusthan or Hindu that it has come to bear. 
The first image that it rouses in the mind is unmistakably 
of our motherland and by an express appeal to its 
geographical and physical features it vivifies it into a 
living Being. Hindusthan meaning the land of Hindus, 
the first essential of Hindutva must necessarily be this 
geographical one. A Hindu is primarily a citizen either 
in himself or through his forefathers of 'Hindusthan' 
and claims the land as his motherland. In America as 
well as in France the word Hindu is generally understood 
thus exactly in the sense of an Indian without any 
religious or cultural implication. And had the word 
Hindu been left to convey this primary significance 
only, which it had in common with all the words derived 


from Sindhu then it would really have meant an 
Indian, a citizen of Hindusthan as the word Hindi does. 

Essential implications of Hindutva 

But throughout our inquiry we have been 
concerning ourselves more with what would have been 
or what should be. Not that to paint what should be is 
not a legitimate pursuit; nay, it is as necessary and at 
times more stimulating; but even that could be better 
done by first getting a firm hold of what actually is. 
We must try, therefore, to be on our guard so that in 
our attempt to determine the essentials of Hindutva we 
be guided entirely by the actual contents of the word as 
it stands at present. So although the root-meaning of the 
word Hindu like the sister epithet Hindi may mean 
only an Indian, yet as it is we would be straining the 
usage of words too much — we fear, to the point of 
breaking-if we call a Mohammedan a Hindu because of 
his being a resident of India. It may be that at some 
future time the word Hindu may come to indicate a 
citizen of Hindusthan and nothing else; that day can 
only rise when all cultural and religious bigotry has 
disbanded its forces pledged to aggressive egoism, and 
religions cease to be 'isms' and become merely the 
common fund of eternal principles that lie at the root of 
all that are a common foundation on which the Human 
State majestically and firmly rests. But as even the first 
streaks ©f this consummation, so devoutly to be wished 
for, arc scarcely discernible on the horizon, it would be 
folly for us to ignore stern realities. As long as every 
other 'ism' has not disowned its special dogmas, which- 


ever tend into dangerous war cries, so long no cultural 
or national unit can afford to loosen the bonds, 
especially those of a common name and a common 
banner, that are the mighty sources of organic cohesion 
and strength. An American may become a citizen of 
India. He would certainly be entitled, if bona fide, to be 
treated as our Bharatiya or Hindi, a countryman and a 
fellow citizen of ours. But as long as in addition to our 
country, he has not adopted our culture and our 
history, inherited our blood and has come to look upon 
our land not only as the land of his love but even of 
his worship, he cannot get himself incorporated into 
the Hindu fold. For although the first requisite of 
Hindutva is that he be a citizen of Hindusthan either 
by himself or through his forefathers, yet it is not the 
only requisite qualification of it, as the term Hindu 
has come to mean much more than its geographical 

Bond of common blood 

7'he reason that explains why the term Hindu 
cannot be synonymous with Bharatiya or Hindi and 
mean an Indian only, naturally introduces us to the 
second essential implication of that term. The Hindus 
are hot merely the citizens of the Indian state because 
they are united not only by the bonds of the love they 
bear to a common motherland but also by the bonds 
of a common blood. They are not onLy a Nation 65 but 
also a race-jati 66. The word jati derived from the 

65 XT*? 66 5&rfa 


root Jan 67 to produce, means a brotherhood, a race 
determined by a common origin,-possessing a common 
blood. All Hindus claim to have in their veins the blood 
of the mighty race incorporated with and descended 
from the Vedic fathers, the Sindhus. We are well aware 
of the not unoften interested objection that carpingly 
questions 'but are you really a race ? Can you be said to 
possess a common blood?* We can only answer by 
questioning in return, 'Are the English a race ? Is there 
anything as English blood, the French blood, the 
German blood or the Chinese blood in this world? 
Do they, who have been freely infusing foreign blood 
into their race by contracting marriages with other 
races and peoples possess a common Wood and claim 
to be a race by themselves ? If they do, Hindus also 
can emphatically do so. For the very castes, which you 
owing to your colossal failure to understand and view 
them in the tight perspective, assert to have barred the 
common Bow of blood into our race, have done so 
more truly and more effectively as regards the foreign 
blood than our own. Nay. is not the very presence of 
these present castes a standing testimony to a common 
flow of blood from a Brahman to a Chandal ?68 Even a 
cursory glance at any of our Smritis would conclusively 
prove that the Anuloma69 and Pratiloma70 marriage 
institutions were the order of the day and have given 
birth to the majority of the castes that obtain amongst 
us. If a Kshatriya has a son by a Shudra woman, he 
gives birth to ' the Ugra caste; again, if the Kshatriya 

67 3ffi 68 ^t^ra 69 3T^*r 70 srfawra 


raises an issue on an Ugra he founds a Shvapacha caste 
while a Brahman mother arid a Shudra father beget the 
caste, Chandal. From the Vedic story of Satyakama 
Jabali to Mahadaji Shinde every page of our history 
shows that the ancient Ganges of our blood has come 
down from the altitudes of the sublime Vedic heights to 
the plains of our modern history fertilizing much, 
incorporating many a noble stream and purifying many 
a lost soul, increasing in volume and richness, defying 
the danger of being lost in bogs and sands and flows 
to-day refreshed and reinvigorated more than ever. All 
that the caste system has done is to regulate its noble 
bood on lines believed-andon the whole rightly belie ved- 
by our saintly and patriotic law-givers and kings to 
contribute most to fertilize and enrich all that was 
barren and poor, without famishing and debasing all 
that was flourishing and nobly endowed. 

This is true not only in the case of those that are 
the outcome of the intermarriages between the chief 
four castes, or between the chief four castes and the 
cross-born but also in the case of those tribes or races 
who somewhere in the dimness of the hoary past were 
leading a separate and self-centred life. Witness the 
customs prevalent in Malabar or Nepal where a Hindu 
of the highest caste is allowed to marry a woman of 
those who are supposed to be the originally alien tribes 
but who, even if the suggestion be true, have by their 
brave and loving defence of the Hindu culture have 
been incorporated with and bound to us by the dearest 
of ties — the ties of a common blood. Is the Nagavan- 
sha a Dravidian family ? Well, then who is who now 


when the youths of Agnivansha have taken to them the 
daughters of the Nagas and the Chandravansha and 
the Suryavansha have bestowed their daughters on the 
youths of both the families? Down to the day of 
Harsha-not to mention the partial break-down of the 
caste-system itself in the centuries of Buddhistic sway 
—intermarriages were the order of the day. Take 
for example the case of a single family of the 
Pandawas. The sage Parashar was a Brahman. He fell 
in love with the fair maid of a fisherman who gave 
birth to the world -renowned Vyas, who in his turn 
raised two sons on the Kshatriya princesses Amba and 
Ambalika; one of these two sons, Pandu allowed his 
wives to raise issue by resorting to the Niyoga system 
and they having solicited the love of men of unknown 
castes, gave birth to the heroes of our great epic. 
Without mentioning equally distinguished characters of 
the same period Kama, Babhruwahana, Ghatotkacha, 
Vidur and others, we beg to point out to the relatively 
modern cases of Chandragupta said to have married a 
Brahman girl who gave birth to the father of Ashok; 
Ashok who had as a prince married a Vaishya maid ; 
Harsha who being a Vaishya gave his daughter in 
marriage to a Kshatriya prince ; Vyadhakarma who is 
said to be the son of a Vyadha with whom his mother, a 
Brahman girl, had fallen in love and who grew to be 
the ' Yajnacharya of Vikramaditya, Surdas; Krishna 
Bhatta who being a Brahman fell so desperately in love 
with a Chandala girl as to lead an open married life 
with her and subsequently became the founder of the 
religious sect Matangi Pantha ; who nevertheless call 


themselves and are perfectly entitled to be recognized 
as Hindus. This is not all. An individual at times by 
his or her own actions may lose his or her first caste 
and be relegated to another. A Shudra can become 
a Brahman and Brahman become a Shudra. The 

[The family is not really called a family; it is the 
practices and customs that are called a family. One 
that does his duties is praised on earth and in. heaven.] 
was not always an empty threat. Many a Kshatriya 
has by taking to agriculture and other occupations of 
life lost the respect due to a Kshatriya and were classed 
with some of the other castes; while many a brave 
man, in cases whole tribes, raised themselves to the 
position, the rights and titles of the Kshatriyas and 
were recognized as such. Being outcast from a caste, 
which is an event of daily occurrence, is only getting 
incorporated with some other. 

Not only is this true so far as those Hindus only 
who believe in the caste system based on the Vedic 
tenets, are concerned, but even in the case of Avaidik 
sects of the Hindu people. As it was true in the 
Buddhistic period that a Buddhist father, a Vaidik 
mother, a Jain son, could be found in a single joint 
family, so even to-day Jains and Vaishnavas intermarry 


in Gujarat, Sikhs and Sanatanis in Punjab and Sind. 
Moreover, today's Manbhav or Lingayat or Sikh or 
Satnami is yesterday's Hindu and to-dav's Hindu may 
be tomorrow's Lingayat or Bramho or Sikh. 

And no word can give full expression to this 
racial unity of our people as the epithet, Hindu, does. 
Some of us were Aryans and some Anaryans ; but 
Ayars and Nayars — we were all Hindus and own a 
common blood. Some of us are Brahmans and some 
Namashudras or Panchamas; but Brahmans or Chanda- 
las— we are all Hindus and own a common blood. Some 
of us are Daxinatyas and some Gauds ; but Gauds or 
Saraswatas — we are all Hindus and own a common 
blood. Some of us were Rakhasas and some Yakshas; 
but Rakshasas or Yakshas — we are all Hindus and 
own a common blood. Some of us were Vanaras and 
some Kinnaras ; but Vanaras or Naras — we are all 
Hindus and own a common blood. Some of us are 
Jains and some Jangamas ; but Jains or Jangamas — we 
are all Hindus and own a common blood. Some of us 
are monists, some, pantheists ; some theists and some 
atheists. But monotheists or atheists-we are all Hindus 
and own a common blood. We are not only a nation 
but a Jati, a born brotherhood. Nothing else counts, it 
is after all a question of heart. We feel that the same 
ancient blood that coursed through the veins of Ram 
and Krishna, Buddha and Mahavir, Nanak and 
Chaitanya, Basava and Madhava, of Rohidas and Tiru- 
velluvar courses throughout Hindudom from vein 
to vein, pulsates from heart to heart. Wo feel we are a 


J ATI, a race bound together by the dearest ties of 
blood and therefore it must be so. 

After all there is throughout this world so far as 
man is concerned but a single race— the human race 
kept alive by one common blood, the human blood. 
All other talk is at best provisional, a makeshift and 
only relatively true. Nature is constantly trying to 
overthrow the artificial barriers you raise between race 
and race. To try to prevent the commingling of blood 
is to build on sand. Sexual attraction has proved 
more powerful than all the commands of all the 
prophets put together. Even as it is, not even the 
aborigines of the Andamans are without some sprink- 
ling of the so-called Aryan blood in their veins and 
vice versa Truly speaking all that any one of us can 
claim, all that history entitles one to claim, is that one 
has the blood of all mankind in one's veins. The 
fundamental unity of man from pole to pole is true, 
all else only relatively so. 

And speaking relatively alone, no people in the 
world can more justly claim to get recognized as a racial 
unit than the Hindus and perhaps the Jews. A Hindu 
marrying a Hindu may lose his caste but not his 
Hindutva. A Hindu believing in any theoretical or 
philosophical or social system, orthodox or heterodox, 
provided it is unquestionably indigenous and founded 
by a Hindu may lose his sect but not his Hindutva-his 
Hinduness — because the most important essential which 
determines it is the inheritance of the Hindu blood 
Therefore all those who love the land that stretches 


from Sindhu to Sindhu from the Indus to the Seas, as 
their fatherland consequently claim to inherit the blood 
of the race that has evolved, by incorporation and adap- 
tation, from the ancient Suptasindhus can be said to 
possess two of the most essential requisites of Hindutva. 

Common culture 

But only two; because a moment's consideration 
would show that these two qualifications of one nation 
and one race— of a common fatherland and therefore 
of a common blood — cannot exhaust all the requisites 
of Hindutva. The majority of the Indian Mohammedans 
may, if free from the prejudices born of ignorance, 
come to love our land as their fatherland, as the patri- 
otic and noble-minded amongst tbem have always 
been doing. The story of their conversions, forcible in 
millions of cases, is too recent (o make them forget, 
even if they like to do so, that they inherit Hindu blood 
in their veins. But can we, who here are concerned 
with investigating into facts as they are and not as they 
should be, recognize these Mohammedans as Hindus ? 
Many a Mohammedan community in Kashmir and 
other parts of India as well as the Christians in 
South India observe our caste rules to such an extent 
as to marry generally within the pale of their 
castes alone; yet, it is clear that though their 
original Hindu blood is thus almost unaffected by 
an alien adulteration, yet they cannot be called 
Hindus in the sense in which that term is actually 
understood, because, we Hindus are bound together 
not only by the tie of the love we bear to a common 


fatherland and by the common blood that courses 
through our veins and keeps our hearts throbbing 
and our affections warm, but also by the tie of the 
common homage we pay to our great civilization — our 
Hindu culture, which could not be better rendered than 
by the word Sanskriti7i suggestive as it is of that 
language, Sanskrit, which has been the chosen means 
of expression and preservation of that culture, of 
all that was best and worth-preserving in the history 
of our race. We are one because we are a nation a 
race and own a common Sanskriti (civilization). 

What is civilization ? 

But what is civilization ? Civilization is the expre- 
ssion of the mind of man. Civilization is the account 
of what man has made of matter. If matter is the 
creation of the Lord, then civilization is the miniature 
secondary creation of man. At its best it is the perfect 
triumph of the soul of man over matter and man alike. 
Wherever and to the extent to which man has succeed- 
ed in moulding matter to the delight of his soul, civili- 
zation begins. And it triumphs when he has tapped all 
the sources of Supreme Delight satisfying the spiritual 
aspirations of his being towards strength and beauty 
and love, realising Life in all its fulness and richness. 

The story of the civilization of a nation is the 
story of its thoughts, its actions and its achievements. 
Literature and art tell us of its thoughts; history and 
social institutions of its actions and achievements. In 

71 tfSfjfa 


none of these can man remain isolated. The primitive 
'dungi' (canoe) of the Andamanese can truly claim to 
have influenced the up-to-date dreadnoughts of Ameri- 
ca. The latest adventure of fashion amongst the fair sex 
in Paris is but the lineal descendant of the bunch of 
leaves stuck in the girdle-string which constitutes the 
perfection of the toilet of a Tatua' girl. 

And yet a 'dungi' remains a dun gi and a dread- 
nought, a dreadnought; they are too much more unlike 
each other than like to be identified as one and the 
same. Even so, although the Hindus have lent much 
and borrowed much like any other people, yet their 
civilization is too characteristic to be mistaken for any 
other cultural unit. And secondly, however striking 
their mutual differences be, they are too much more 
like each other than unlike, to be denied the right of 
being recognized as a cultural unit amongst other such 
units in the world owning a common history,a common 
literature and a common civilization 

Paradoxical as it may sound to those who have 
fallen victims to the interested or ignorant cry that has 
secured the ear of the present world that the Hindus 
have no history, it nevertheless remains true that 
Hindus are about the only people who have succeeded 
in preserving their history— riding through earthquakes, 
bridging over deluges. It begins with their Vedas which 
are the first extant chapter of the story of our race. 
The first cradle songs that every Hindu girl listens to are 
the songs of Sita, the good. Some of us worship Rama as 
an incarnation, some admire him as a hero and a 


warrior, and all love hi m as the most illustrious represen- 
tative monarch of our race. Maruti and Bheemsen, 
are the never failing source of strength and physical 
perfection to the Hindu youth; Savitri and Damayanti, 
the never failing ideals of constancy and chastity of the 
Hindu maid. The love that Radha made to the Divine 
Cow-herd in Gokul finds its echo wherever a Hindu 
lover kisses his beloved. The giant struggle of the 
Kurus, the set duels of Arjun and Kama, of Bhcem 
and Dusshasan that took place on the field of Kuru- 
kshetra thousands of years ago, are rehearsed in all 
their thrill from cottage to cottage and from palace to 
palace. Abhimanyu could not have been dearer to Arjun 
than he is to us. From Ceylon to Kashmir, Hindusthan 
daily sheds tears as lovingly and as bitterly as his father 
did at the mention of the fall of that lotus-eyed 
youth. What more shall we say ? The story of Rama- 
yan and Mahabharat alone would bring us together and 
weld us into a race even if we be scattered to all the 
four winds like a handful of sand. I read the life of a 
Mazzini and I exlcaim, 'How patriotic they are !' I read 
the life of a Madhavacharya and exclaim, 4 How patriotic 
we are ! ' The fall of prithwiraj is bewailed in Bengal: 
the martyred sons of Govindsing, in Maharashtra An 
Aryasamajist historian in the extreme north feels that 
Harihar and Bukka of the extreme south fought for 
him, and a Santanaist historian in the extreme south 
feels that Guru Tejbahadur died for him. We had kings 
in common. We had kingdoms in common. We had 
stability in common. We had triumphs in common and 
disasters in common The names of Mokavasayya and 


Pisal, Jayachand and Kalapahad?2 make us all feel as 
sinners do. The names of Ashok, Bhaskaracharya, Panini 
and Kapila?3 leave us all electrified with a sense <ol 
personal elevation. 

But what about the internecine wars amongst 
Hindus? We answer, what about the Wars of Roses 
amongst the English? What of theinternecine struggle, 
of state against state, sect against sect, class against 
class, each invoking foreign help against his own coun- 
trymen, in Italy, in Germany, in France, in Anierica ? 
Are they still a people, a nation and do they possess a 
common history ? IF they do, the Hindus do. If the 
Hindus do not possess a common history, then none in 
the world does. 

As our history tells the story of the action of our 
race, so does our literature taken in its fullest sense tell 
the story of the thought of our race. Thought, they say, 
is inseparable from our common tongue, Sanskrit. 
Verily it is our mother-tongue— the tongue in which 
the mothers of our race spoke and which has given 
birth to all our present tongues. Our gods spoke in 
Sanskrit, our sages thought in Sanskrit, our poets 
wrote in Sanskrit. All that is best in us — the best thou- 
ghts, the best ideas, the best lines — seeks instinctively 
to clothe itself in Sanskrit. To millions it is still 
the language of their gods; to others it is the language 
of their ancestors; to all it is the language par 

12. rfteT^m^i, trow, sFsnre, ^wr^s, 
73- ai srr^ irwwwf , ^Tftrfay ^flra. 


excellence; a common inheritance, a common treasure, 
that enriches all the family of our sister languages. 
Gujarati and Gurumukhi, Sindhi and Hindi, Tamil, 
and Telugu, Maharastra and Malyalam, Bengali and 
Singali constitute the vital nerve -thread that runs 
through us all vivifying and toning our feelings and 
aspirations into a harmonious whole. It is not a lang- 
uage alone; to many Hindus, it is a Mantra, to all it is 
a music. The Vedas do not constitute an authority for 
all Jains. But the Vedas as the most ancient work and 
the history of their race belong to Jains as much as to 
any of us. Adipuran was not written by a Sanatani, yet 
the Adipuran 74 is the common inheritance of the Sanata- 
nis and the Jains. The Baisavapurana is the Bible of the 
Lingayats; but it belongs to Lingayat and non-Lingayat 
Hindus alike, as one of the foremost and historical 
Kanarese work extant. Vichitranatak of Guru Govind 
is as truly the property of a Hindu in Bengal as the 
Chaitanyacharitramrit is of a Sikh. Kalidas and Bhav- 
bhuti, Charak and Sushrut, Aryabhatt and Varahamihii a, 
Bhasa and Ashvaghosha, Jayadev and Jagannath wrote 
for us all, appeal to us all, are the cherished possession 
of us all. Let the work of Kamba, the Tamil poet and 
say, a copy of Haf iz be kept before a Hindu in Bengal 
and if he be asked 'Which of these belongs to you?* He 
would instinctively say, 'Kamba is mine! * Let a copy of 
the work of Ravindranath and that of Shakespeare be 

74 arrfajTro, ^raycm, fafe^z*;, ^^r^Ti^mj^ 


kept before a Hindu in Maharashtra, he would claim 
'Ravindra ! Ravindra is mine.' 

The woiks of art and architecture are also a 
common inheritance of our race, whether they be repre- 
sentative ofVaidik or Avaidik school of thought. For 
all the labourers who wrought them, the masters who 
guided them, the tax -papers who financed them and the 
kings who organised them, whether Vaidik or Avaidik 
belonged to the great race that inhabits and owns this 
land from Sihdhu to Sindhu— the Hindu race. Those 
who are Sanatanis today have contributed and labouied 
for the Buddhistic monuments of art and architecture 
then, while these who were Buddhistic then have con- 
tributed to and laboured for the monuments, of the 
Sanatani art and architecture now. 

Commons laws and rites 

Common institutions and a common law that sanctions 
and sanctifies them, however they may differ in details 
are nevertheless both the cause and the effect of the 
basic unity of our race. The Hindu law with the 
underlying principles of Hindu jurisprudence whatever 
the superficial differences be and howsoever contradicto 
ry a detail here or an injunction there may seem to be, 
is too organic a growth to lose its individuality by the* 
manifold changes wrought by times and climes- Jn spite 
of the feverish speed with which the law-machines 
in the different states of America and British Common- 
wealth keep manufacturing and modelling laws we still 
acknowledge the principles of jurisprudence and the 


lines of growth that underlie their code to, constitute a 
single whole. The English law, or the Roman jurispru- 
dence or the American law could not be designated as 
such if eternal identity or a dead level similarity is 
expected. The Mohammedan law retains its individuality 
inspite of such damaging exceptions to it as the Khojas 
or the Bohras who like some other Mohammedan 
communities, observe the Hindu law in regulating some 
departments of their life, notably in matters of inherit- 
ance- Some of the Hindu customs in Maharashtra or 
Panjab may differ from -some in Bengal or Sind. But 
the similarity in all other details is so great that the law 
of Maharashtra as a whole seems to be an echo of 
the law-book ruling our brothers in Bengal or Sind 
and vice versa. When all the rules, customs and laws 
observed by any given community are collected 
together it can immediately be found to be nothing but 
a fitting chapter of the Hindu law while no amount of 
ingenuity or torture can fit in, say the English or 
the Mohammedan or the Japanese law-books. 

We have feasts and festivals in common. We have 
rites and rituals in common. The Dasara and the Divali 
the Rakhibandhan and the Holi are welcomed 
wherever a Hindu breathes, S^khs and Jains, 
Brahmans and Panchams alike- You would find the 
whole Hindu kingdom enfete on the Divali day, not 
only Hindusthan, but the Greater Hindusthan that is 
fast growing in all the continents of the world- Not 
even a cottage in the Tarai forest could be found on 
that night that has not shown its little light. While 
the Rakhi day would reveal to you every Hindu soul 


from the delighted damsel of Punjab to the austere 
Brahmins of Madras tying the silken tie that, 'heart to 
heart and mind to mind, in body and in soul, can bind,' 
Yet we have deliberately refrained ourselves from 
referring to any religious beliefs that we as a race may 
hold in common . Nor had we referred to any 
institution or event or custom in its religious aspect or 
significance, because we wanted to deal with the 
essentials of Hindutva not in the light of any 'ism* but 
from a racial point of view ; and yet from a national 
and racial point of view do the different places of 
pilgrimage constitute, common inheritance of our 
Hindu race. The Rathayatra festival at Jagannath, the 
Vaishakhi at Amritsar, the'-Kumbha and Ardhakumbha- 
all these great gatherings had been the real and living 
congress of our people that kept the current of life 
and the thought coursing throughout our body politic- 
The quaint customs and ceremonies and sacraments 
they involve, observed by some as a religious duty, by 
others as social amenities, impress upon each individual 
that he can live best only through the common and 
corporate life of the Hindu race. 

These then in short — and the subject in hand does 
not permit us to be exhaustive on this point — constit- 
ute the essence of our civilization and mark us out a 
cultural unit. We Hindus are not only a Rashtra, a 
Jati, but as a consequence of being both, own a common 
Sanskriti expressed, preserved chiefly and originally 
through Sankrit, the real mother tongue of our race. 
Everyone who is a Hindu inherits this Sanskriti and 
owes his spiritual being to it as truly as he owes hi s 


physical one to the land and the blood of his 

A Hindu then is he who feels attachment to the 
land that extends from Sindhu to Sindhu as the land 
of his forefathers — as his Fatherland; who inherits 
the blood of the great race whose first and discernible 
source could be traced from the Himalayan altitudes of 
the Vedic Saptasindhus and which assimilating all 
that was incorporated and ennobling all that was 
assimilated has grown into and come to be known as 
the Hindu people; and who, as a consequence of the 
foregoing attributes, has inherited and claims as his 
own the Hindu Sanskrit!, the Hindu civilization, as 
represented in a common history, common heroes, a 
common literature, common art, a common law and a 
common jurisprudence, common fairs and festivals, 
rites and rituals, ceremonies and sacraments. Not that 
every Hindu has all these details of the Hindu Sanskri- 
ti down to each syllable common with other Hindus ; 
but that he has more of it common With his Hindu 
brothers than with, say, an Arab or an Englishman. Not 
that a non-Hindu does not hold any of these details 
in common with a Hindu but that, he differs more from 
a Hindu than he agrees with him. That is why Christi- 
an and Mohammedan communities, who, were but Very 
recently Hindus and in a majority of cases had been at 
least in their first generation most unwilling denizens of 
their new fold, claim though they might have a comm- 
on Fatherland, and an almost pure Hindu blood and 
parentage with us, cannot be recognized as Hindus ; as 
since their adoption of the new cult they had ceased 


to own Hindu civilization (Sanskriti) as a whole. 
They belong, or feel that they belong, to a cultural unit 
altogether different from the Hindu one. Their heroes 
and their hero-worship, their fairs and their festivals, 
their ideals and their outlook on life, have now ceased 
to be common with ours. Thus the presence of this 
third essential of Hindutva which requires of every 
Hindu uncommon and loving attachment to his racial 
Sanskriti enables us most perfectly to determine the 
nature of Hindutva without any danger of using over 
lapping or exclusive attributes. 

But take the case of a patriotic Bohra or a Khoja 
countryman of ours. He loves our land of Hindusthan 
as his Fatherland which indisputably is the land of his 
forefathers. He possesses — in certain cases they do — 
pure Hindu blood; especially if he is the first convert to 
Mohammedanism he must be allowed to claim to inherit 
the blood of Hindu parents. He is an intelligent and 
reasonable man, loves our history and our heroes; in 
fact the Bohras and the Khojas as a community, wor- 
ship as heroes our great ten Avatars only adding 
Mohammad as the eleventh. He is actually, along with 
his community subject to the Hindu law — the law of 
his forefathers. He is, so far as the three essentials 
of nation (Rashtra), race (Jati) and civilization 
( Sanskriti ) are concerned, a Hindu. He may differ 
as regards a few festivals or may add a few more 
heroes to the pantheon of his supermen or demi- 
gods. But we have repeatedly said that difference 
in details here or emphasis there, does not throw us 
outside the pale of Hindu Sanskriti. The sub-commu- 


nities amongst the Hindus observe many a custom, 
not only contradictory but even, conflicting with, the cus- 
toms of other Hindu communities. Yet both of them 
are Hindus, So also in the above cases of patriotic 
Bohra or a Christian or a Khoja, who could satisfy the 
required qualifications of Hindutva to such a degree 
as that, why should he not be recognized as a Hindu ? 

He would certainly have been recognized as such 
but for his attitude towards a single detail, which, 
though it is covered by the words, Sanskriti or culture, 
is yet too important to be lost in the multitude of 
other attributes, and therefore deserves a special treat- 
ment and analysis, whicji again brings us face to face 
with the question which, involving as it does the religi- 
ous aspect of Hindutva, had often been avoided by us, 
not because we fight shy of it, but on account of our 
wish to fight it out all the more thoroughly and effect- 
ively. For, we are now better equipped to determine 
the significance and attempt an analysis of the two 
terms Hinduism and Hindutva. 

Who is a Hindu ? 

The words Hindutva and Hinduism both of them 
being derived from the word Hindu, must necessarily be 
understood to refer to the whole of the Hindu people 
Any definition of Hinduism that leaves out any impor- 
tant section of our people and forces fchem either to 
play false to their convictions or to go outside the pale 


ofHindutva stands self-condemned. Hinduism means 
the system of religious beliefs found common amongst 
the Hindu people. And the only way to find out what 
those religious beliefs of the Hindus are, /. £., what 
constitutes Hinduism, you must first define a Hindu. 
But forgetting this chief implication of the word, Hin- 
duism which clearly presupposes an independent conce- 
ption of a Hindu many people go about to determine 
the essentials of Hinduism and finding none so satisfac- 
tory as to include, without overlapping all our Hindu 
communities, come to the desperate conclusion— which 
does not satisfy them either — that therefore those 
communities are not Hindus at all; not because 
the definition they had framed is open to the fault 
of exclusion but because those communities do not 
subject themselves to the required tenets which these 
gentlemen have thought it fit to lable as 'Hinduism'. 
This way of answering the question 'who is a Hindu' 
is really preposterous and has given rise to so much of 
bitterness amongst some of our brethren of Avaidik 
school of thought, the Sikh, the Jain, the Devsamaji 
and even our patriotic and progressive Aryasamajis. 

' Who is a Hindu ? ' — he who is subject to the 
tenets of Hinduism. Very well. What is Hinduism ? — 
those tenets to which the Hindus are subjected. This is 
very nearly arguing in a circle and can never lead to a 
satisfactory solution. Many of our friends who have 
been on this wrong track have come back to tell us 
* there are no such people as Hindus at all ! ' If some 
Indian, as gifted as that Englishman who first coined 
the word Hinduism, coins a parallel word 'Englishism ' 


and proceeds to find out the underlying unity of beliefs 
amongst the English people, gets disgusted with 
thousands of sects and societies from Jews to the 
Jacobins, from Trinity to Utility, and comes out to 
announce that 6 there are no such people as the English 
at all,' he would not make himself more ridiculous than 
those who declare in cold print ' there is nothing as a 
Hindu people. ' Any one vyho wants to see what a 
confusion of thought prevails on the point and how 
the failure to analyse separately the two terms 
Hindutva and Hinduism renders that confusion worst 
confounded may do well to go through the booklet 
' Essentials of Hinduism * published by the enterpris- 
ing ' Natesan and Co. ' 

Hinduism means the ' ism ' of the Hindu ; and as 
the word Hindu has been derived from the word 
Sindhu, the Indus, meaning primarily all the people 
who reside in the land that extends from Sindhu to 
Sindhu, Hinduism must necessarily mean the religion 
or the religions that are peculiar and native to this land 
and these people. If we are unable to reduce the 
different tenets and beliefs to a single system of religion 
then the only way would be to cease to maintain that 
Hinduism is a system and to say that it is a set of 
systems consistent with, or if you like, contradictory or 
even conflicting with, each other. But in no case can 
you advance this your failure to determine the meaning 
of Hinduism as a ground to doubt the existence of the 
Hindu nation itself, or worse still to commit a sacrilege 
in hurting, the feelings of our Avaidik brethren and 


Vaidik Hindu brethren alike, by relegating any of them 
to the Non-Hindu pale. 

The limits of this essay do not permit us to 
determine the nature or the essentials of Hinduism or 
to try to discuss it at any great length. As we have 
shown above the enquiry into what is Hinduism can 
only begin after the question ' who is a Hindu ' ? is 
rightly answered determining the essentials of Hind u- 
tva ; and as it is only with these essentials of Hindutva, 
which enable us to know who is a Hindu, that this our 
present enquiry is concerned, the discussion of 
Hinduism Falls necessarily outside of our scope. We 
have to take cognizance of it only so far as it trespasses 
on the field of our special charge. Hinduism is a word 
that properly speaking should be applied to all the 
religious beliefs that the different communities of the 
Hindu people hold. But it is generally applied to that 
system of religion which the majority of the Hindu 
people follow. It is natural that a religion or a country 
or community should derive its name from the 
characteristic feature which is common to an over- 
whelming majority that constitutes or contributes to it. 
It is also convenient for easy reference or parlance. 
But a convenient term that is not only delusive but 
harmful and positively misleading should not any 
longer be allowed to blind our judgement. The majo- 
rity of the Hindus subscribes to that system of 
religion which could fitly be described by the attribute 
that constitutes its special feature, as told by Shruti, 
Smriti and Puranas or Sanatan Dharma. They would 
not object if it even be called Vaidik. Dharma. But 


besides these there are other Hindus who reject either 
partly or wholly, the authority— some of the Puranas, 
some of the Smritis and some of the Shrutis them- 
selves. But if you identify the religion of the Hindus 
with the religion of the majority only and call it 
orthodox Hinduism, then the different heterodox com- 
munities being Hindus themselves rightly resent this 
usurpation of Hindutva by the majority as well as 
their unjustifiable exclusion. The religion of the 
minorities also requires a name. But if you call the so- 
called orthodox religion alone as Hinduism then 
naturally it follows that the religion of the so-called 
heterodox js not Hinduism. The next most fatal step 
being that, therefore, those sections are not Hindus at 
all ! ! But this inference seems as staggering even to 
those who had unwillingly given whole-hearted 
support to the premises which have made it logically 
inevitable that while hating to own it they hardly know 
to avoid arriving at it And thus we find that while 
millions of our Sikhs, Jains, Lingayats, several 
Samajis and others would deeply resent to be told that 
they — whose fathers' fathers up to the tenth genera- 
tion had the blood of Hindus in their veins — had 
suddenly ceased to be Hindu ! — yet a section amongst 
them takes it most emphatically for granted that they 
had been faced with a choice that either they should 
consent to be a party to those customs and beliefs 
which they had in their puritanic or progressive zeal 
rejected as superstitions, or they should cease to belong 
to that race to which their forefathers belonged. 


Alt this bitterness is mostly due to the wrong use 
of the word, Hinduism, to denote the religion of the 
majority only. Either the word should be restored to 
its proper significance to denote the religions of all 
Hindus or if you fail to do that it should be dropped 
altogether. The religion of the majority of the Hindus 
could be best denoted by the ancient accepted appella- 
tion, the Sanatan dharma or the Shruti-smriti-puranokta 
Dbarma 75 or the Vaidik Dharma; while the religion of 
the remaining Hindus would continue to be denoted by 
their respective and accepted names Sikha Dharma or 
Arya Dharma or Jain Dharma or Buddha' Dharma. 
Whenever the necessity of denoting these Dharmas as a 
whole arises then alone we may be justified in denoting 
them by the generic term Hindu Dharma or Hinduism. 
Thus there would be no loss either in clearness, or in 
conciseness but on the other hand a gain both in 
precision and unamibguity which by removing the 
cause of suspicion in our minor communities and 
resentment in the major one would once more unite 
us all Hindus under our ancient banner representing a 
common race and a common civilization. 

The earliest records that we have got of the religi- 
ous beliefs of any Indian community — not to speak of 
mankind itself— are the Vedas. The Vedic nation of the 
Saptasindhus was sub-divided into many a tribe and 
class. But although the majority then held a faith that we 
for simplicity call Vedic religion, yet it was not contri- 
buted to by an important minority of the Sindhus them- 

75 ' ^r^jjfcrg^Fft^^r^: ' 


selves. The Panees, the Dasas, the Vratyas'6 and many 
others from time to time seem to have either seceded 
from or never belonged to the orthodox church and yet 
racially and nationally they were conscious of being a 
people by themselves. There was such a thing as Vedic 
religion, but it could not even be idenitfied with Sindhu 
Dharma; for the latter term, had it been coined, would 
have naturally meant the set of religions prevailing in 
Saptasindhu, othodox as well as heterodox. By a pro- 
cess of elimination and assimilation the race of the 
Sindhus at lasc grew into the race of Hindus, and the 
land of the Sindhus i. e. Sindhustan, into the land of 
the Hindus i. e. Hindusthan. While their orthodox and 
the heterodox schools of religions have, — having tested 
much, dared much and known much, — having subjected 
to the most searching examination possible till then, 
all that lay between the grandest and the tiniest, from the 
atom to the Atman— from the Paramanu to the Para- 
brahma,— having sounded the deepest secrets of thoughts 
and having soared to the highest altitudes of ecstasy, — 
given birth to a synthesis that sympathises with all 
aspirants towards truth from the monist to the atheist. 
Truth was its goal, realization its method. It is neither 
Vedic nor non- Vedic, it is both. It is the veritable 
science of religion applied. This is Hindudharma — the 
conclusion of the conclusions arrived at by harmonising 
the detailed experience of all the schools of religious 
thought-Vaidik, Sanatani, Jain, Baudda, Sikha or De- 
vasamaji. Each one and every one of those systems or 

76 <r*ft, ?ra, ?rfc*T 


sects which are the direct descendants and developments 
of the religious beliefs Vaidik and non-VaidiL that 
obtained in the land of the Saptasindhus or in the other 
unrecorded communities in other parts of India in the 
Vedic period, belongs to and is an integral part of Hin- 
du dharma. 

Therefore the Vaidik or the Sanatan Dharma itself 
is merely a sect of Hinduism or Hindu Qharma, how- 
ever overwhelming be the majority that contributes to 
its tenets. It was a definition of this Sanatan Dharma 
which the late Lokamanya Tilak framed in the famous 

Belief in the Vedas, many means, no strict rule for 
worship-these are the features of the Hindu religion. 

In a learned article that he had contributed to the 
Chitramaya jagat which bears the mark of his deep erudi- 
tion and insight Lokmanya in an attempt to develop 
this more or less negative definition into a positive one, 
had clearly suggested that he had an eye not on Hindu- 
tva as such but. only on what was popularly called 
Hindudharma, and had also admitted that it could hard- 
ly include in its sweep the Aryasamajis and other sects 
which nevertheless are racially and nationally Hindus 
of Hindus. That definition, excellent so far as it goes, 
is in fact not a definition of Hindudharma, much less 
of Hindutva but of Sanatan Dharma— the Shruti-Smri- 


ti-puranokta77 sect, which being the most popular of all 
sects of Hindu Dharma was naturally but loosely mis- 
taken for Hindu Dharma itself. 

Thus Hindu Dharma being etymologically as well 
as actually and in its religious aspects only, (for Dharma 
is not merely religion) the religion of the Hindus, it 
necessarily partakes of all the essentials that character- 
ise a Hindu. We have found that the first important 
essential qualification of a Hindu is that to him the 
land that extends from Sindhu to Sindhu is the Father- 
land, (Pitribhu) the Motherland (Matribhu) the land 
of his patriarchs and forefathers. The system or set of 
religions which we call Hindu Dharma — Vaidik and 
Non-Vaidik — is as truly the offspring of this soil as 
the men whose thoughts they are or who 'saw' the 
Truth revealed in them. To Hindu Dharma with all its 
sects and systems this land, Sindhusthan, is the land of 
its revelation, the land of its birth on this human 
plane. As the Ganges, though flowing from the lotus 
feet of Vishnu himself, is even to the most orthodox 
devotee and mystic so far as human plane is concerned 
the daughter of the Himalayas, even so, this land is the 
birth-place — the Matribhu (motherland) and the Pitri- 
bhu (fatherland) — of that Tatvajnana (philosophy) 
which in its religious aspect is signified as Hindu Dha- 
rma. The second most important essential of Hindutva 
is that a Hindu is a descendant of Hindu parents, cla- 
ims to have the blood of the ancient Sindhu and the 
race that sprang from them in his veins. This also is 

77 «rfcr^JTfcr-3TTift^r 


true of the different schools of religion of the Hindus; 
for they too being either founded by or revealed to 
the Hindu sages, and seers are the moral and cultural 
and spiritual descendants and development of the Tho- 
ught of Saptasindhus through the process of assimilati- 
on and elimination, as we are of their seed. Not only 
is Hindu Dharma the growth of the natural environ- 
ments and of the thought of the Indus, but also of 
the Sanskriti or culture of the Hindus. The environ- 
mental frames in which its scenes, whether of the 
Vaidik period or of Bauddha, Jain or any extremely 
modern ones of Chaitanya, Chakradhar, Basava, Nanak, 
Dayananda or Raja Rammohan, are set; the technical 
terms and the language that furnished expression to its 
highest revelation and ecstasies, its mythology and its 
philosophy, the conceptions it controverted and the 
conceptions it adopted, have the indelible stamp of 
Hindu culture, of Hindu Sanskriti, impressed upon 
them. Hindu Dharma of all shades and schools, lives 
and grows and has its being in the atmosphere of Hindu 
culture, and the Dharma of a Hindu being so comple- 
tely identified with the land of the Hindus, this land to 
him is not only a Pitribhu but a Punyabhu, not only a 
fatherland but a holyland 

Yes, this Bharatbhumi, this Sindusthan, this land 
of ours that stretches from Sindhu to Sindhu is our 
Punyabhumi, for it was in this land that the Founders of 
our faith and the Seers to whom 'Veda' the Knowledge 
was revealed, from Vaidik seers to Dayananda, from 
Jina to Mahavir, from Buddha to Nagasen, from Nanak 
to Govind, from Banda to Basava, from Chakradhar 


to Chaitanya, from Ramdas to Raramohan, our Gurus, 
and Godmen were born and bred. The very dust of its 
paths echoes the footfalls of our Prophets and Gurus. 
Sacred are its rivers, hallowed its groves, for it was 
either on their moonlit ghats or under their eventide 
long shadows, that the deepest problemsof life, of man, 
soul and God, of Brahma and Maya, were debated and 
discussed by a Buddha pr a Shankar. Ah' every hill and 
dellis instinct with memories of a Kapil or a Vyas % 
Shankar or Ramdas. Here Bhagirath rules, there 
Kurukshetra lies. Here Ramchandra made his first halt 
of an exile, there Janaki saw the golden deer and fondly 
pressed her love.r to kill it. Here the divine Cowherd 
played on his flute that made every heart in Gokul 
dance in harmony as if in a hypnotized sleep. Here 
is Bodhi Vriksha, here the deer-park, here Mahaveer 
entered Nirvana. Here stood crowds of worshippers 
amongst whom Nanak sat and sang.the Arati 'the sun & 
the moon are the lights in the plate of the sky ! 78 Here 
Gopichand the king look on vows of Gopichand the Jogi 
and with a bowl in his hand knocked at his sister's door 
for a handful of alms ! Here the son of Bandabahadur 
was hacked to pieces before the eyes of his father and 
the young bleeding heart of the son thrust in the 
father's mouth for the fault of dying as a Hindu ! Every 
stone here has a storv of martyrdom to tell ! Every 
inch of thy soil, O Mother ! has been a sacrificial 
ground! Not only 'where the Krishnasar is found' but 
from Kasmir to Sinhar it is * Land of sacrifice, ' sancti* 


lied with a Jnana Yajna or an Atmaajna. ( self- 
sacrifice) So to every Hindu, from the Santal to the 
Sadhu this Bharata bhumi this Sindhusthan is at once a 
Pitribhu and a Punyabhu — fatherland and a holy land. 

That is why in the case of some of our Mohamme- 
dan or Christian countrymen who had originally been 
forcibly converted to a non-Hindu religion and who 
consequently have inherited along with Hindus, a 
common Fatherland and a greater part of the wealth of 
a common culture — language, law, customs, folklore and 
history — are not and cannot be recognized as Hindus. 
For though Hindus than to them is Fatherland as to 
any other Hindu yet it is not to them a Holyland 
loo. Their holyland is far off in Arabia or Palestine. 
Their mythology and Godmen, ideas and heroes are 
not i:he children of this spil. Consequently their 
names and their outlook smack of a foreign origin. 
Their love is divided. Nay, if some of them be really 
believing what they profess to do, then there can 
be no choice— they must, to a man, set their Holy- 
land above their Fatherland in their love and allegi- 
ance. That is but natural. We are not condemning nor 
are we lamenting. We are simply telling facts as they 
stand. We have tried to determine the essentials of 
Hindutva and in doing so we have discovered that the 
Bolu-as and such other Mohammedan or Christian 
communities possess all the essential qualifications of 
Hindutva but one and that is that they do not look 
upon India as their Holyland. 

It is not a question of embracing any doctrine 
propounding any new theory of the interpretation of 


God, Soul and Man, for we honestly believe that the 
Hindu Thought — we are not speaking of any religion 
which is dogma — has exhausted the very possibilities 
of human speculation as to the nature of the Unkno- 
wn—if not the Unknowable, or the nature of the relat- 
ion between that and thou. Are you a monist — a mono- 
theist — a pantheist — an atheist— an agnostic ? Here is 
ample room, O soul ! whatever thou art, to love and 
grow to thy fullest height and satisfaction in this 
Temple of temples, that stands on no personal founda- 
tion but on the broad and deep and strong foundation 
of Truth. Why goest then to fill thy little pitcher to 
wells far off, when thou standest on the banks of 
the crystal-streamed Ganges herself ? Does not the 
blood in your veins, O brother, of our common 
forefathers cry aloud with the recollections of the. dear 
old scenes and ties from which they were so cruelly 
snatched away at the point of the sword? Then come ye 
back to the fold of your brothers and sisters who with 
arms extended are standing at the open gate to welcome 
you — their long lost kith and kin. Where can you 
find more freedom of worship than in this land where a 
Charvak could preach atheism from the steps of the 
temple of Mahakal — more freedom of social organis- 
ation than in the Hindu society where from the Patnas 
of Orissa to the Pandits of Benares, from the Santalas 
to the Sadhus, each can develop a distinct social type 
of polity or organize a new one ? Verily whatever, could 
be found in the world is found here too. And if any- 
thing is not found here it could be found nowhere. 79 

79 tf^rfar ^ ^ ^TfeT * *pf^ i 


Ye, who by race, by blood, by culture, by nationality 
possess almost all the essentials of Hindutva and had 
been forcibly snatched out of our ancestral home by the 
hand of violence — ye, have only to render whole- 
hearted love to our common Mother and recognize her 
not only as Fatherland (Pitribhu) but even as 'a 
Holyland (punyabhu); and ye would be most welcome 
to the Hindu fold. 

This is a choice which our countrymen and our old 
kith and kin, the Bohras, Khojas, Memons and other 
Mohammedan and Christian communities are free to 
make — a choice again which must be a choice of love- 
But as long as they are not minded thus, so long they 
cannot be recognized as Hindus. We are, it must be 
remembered, trying to analyse and determine the 
essentials of Hindutva as that word is actually under- 
stood to signify and would not be justified in straining it 
in its application to suit any pre-conceived notions or 
party convenience. 

A Hindu, therefore, to sum up the conclusions 
arrived at, is he who looks upon the land that extends 
from Sindu to Sindu-from the Indus to the Seas,- 
as the land of his forefathers — his Fatherland 
( Pitribhu ), who inherits the blood of that race 
whose first discernible source could be traced to the 
Vedic Saptasindhus and which on its onward march, 
assimilating much that was incorporated and ennobling 
much that was assimilated, has come to be known as 
the Hindu people, who has inherited and claims as his 
own the culture of that race as expressed chiefly 


in their common classical language Sanskrit and 
represented by a common history, a common lite- 
rature, art and architecture, law and jurisprudence, 
rites and rituals, ceremonies and sacraments, fairs and 
festivals; and who above all, addresses this land, this 
Sindhusthan as his Holyland ( Punyabhu ), as the 
land of his prophets and seers, of his godmen and 
gurus, the land of piety and pilgrimage. These are the 
essentials of Hindutva — a common nation (Rashtra) 
a common, race ( Jati ) and a common civilization 
(Sanskriti). All these essentials could best be 
summed up by stating in brief that he is a 
Hindu to whom Sindhusthan is not only a Pitribhu 
but also a Punyabhu. For the first two essentials of 
Hindutva — nation and Jati — are clearly denoted and 
connoted by the word Pitrubhu while the third 
essential of Sanskriti is pre-eminently implied by the 
word Punyabhu, as it is precisely Sanskriti including 
sanskaras i. e. rites and rituals, ceremonies and 
sacraments, that makes a land a Holyland. To make 
the definition more handy, we may be allowed to 
compress it in a couplet : — 

A Sindu Sindhu paryanta, Yasya Bharatbhumika 
Pitribhuh Punyabhushchaiva sa vai Hinduriti smritah 

faro: yni^Nr tf 4" %ftfa *ier: n 

Hindus in Sindh 

The rough analysis to which the conception of 
Hindutva was subjected in the foregoing pages has 


enabled us to frame a working definition embodying or 
rather indicating the salient essentials of it. It now 
remains to see how far this general definition can stand 
a detailed examination that could be best conducted 
by testing a few typical and some of the most different 
cases which have in fact made the necessity of a 
definition so badly felt. While developing it we have 
tried at each step to free it, so far as it is possible to 
do so in the case of so comprehensive and elusive a 
generalization as that, from the defect of being 
too wide. If we find in testing a few typical cases in the 
light of this definition that they all fit in well then we 
may be sure that it is free from the opposite defect of 
being too narrow. We have seen that it is not open to 
Ativyapti,80 it remains to be seen whether it is not open 
to Avyapti8i also 

The geographical divisions that obtain amongst 
the Hindus would, at a glance, be seen to harmonize 
well with the spirit of our definition. The fundamental 
basis of it is the land from Sindhu to Sindhu, and 
although many of our brethren, and especially those 
who had been the most undoubted descendants of the 
ancient Sindhus and who besides are the very people 
that to this day have never changed the ancient name 
either of their land or of their race, and are called to 
day as five thousand years ago, Sindhi, the children of 
Sindhudesha, inhabit the other bank of the Indus ; yet, 
as in the mention of a river the mention of both its 
banks is implied as a matter of course so that part of 

80 arf^rffar 81 3*5*nfar 


Sindh which constitutes the western bank of the Indus 
is a natural part of Sindhusthan and is covered by our 
definition. Secondly, accessories to the mainland are 
always known by the name of the latter. And thirdly, our 
Hindu people on that side of the Sindhu had throughout 
history looked upon this land of Bharatvarsha as their 
real Pitribhu as well as Punyabhu. They had never 
been guilty of matricide in attempting to SQt up the 
patch they inhabit as their only Pitribhu or only 
Punyabhu. On the other hand their Banaras and 
Kailas and Gangotri are our Banaras and Kailas and 
Gangotri. From the Vedic time they are a part integral 
of Bharatvarsha, Sindhushivisauveers are mentioned in 
Ramayan and Mahabharat as the-rightful constituents of 
the great Hindu confederacy and commonwealth. They 
belong to our Rashtra, to our Jati and to our Sans- 
krit!. Therefore they are Hindus and their case is well- 
covered^by our definition. 

But even if one rejects the contention- that the 
ownership of a river does employ, unless otherwise 
stated, the ownership of both its banks yet the defini- 
tion remains as sound as ever and applies to our 
Sindhi brethren on other grounds. For apart from the 
special case of our Sindhi brethren that inhabit the 
other side of the Indus, there are hundreds of thousa- 
nds of Hindus who have settled in all parts of the world. 
A time may come when these our Hindu colonists, who 
even to-day are the dominating factor in trade, 
numbers, capacity and intellect jn their respective 
lands, may come to own a whole country and form a 
separate state. But will this simple fact of residence in 


lands other than Hindusthan render one a non-Hin- 
du ? Certainly not ; for the first essential of Hindutva is 
not that a man must not reside in lands outside India, 
but that wherever he or his descendants may happen to 
be he must recognize Sindhusthan as the Land of his 
forefathers. Nay more; it is not a question of recogni- 
tion either. If his ancestors came from India as 
Hindus he cannot help recognizing India as his Pitri- 
bhu. So this definition of Hindutva is compatible with 
any conceivable .expansion of our Hindu people. Let 
our colonists continue unabated their labours of 
founding a Greater India, a Mahabharat to the best of 
their capacities and contribute all that is best in our 
civilization to the upbuilding of humanity. Let them 
enrich the people that inhabit the earth from Pole to 
Pole with their virtues and let them in return enrich 
their own country and race by imbibing all that is 
healthy and true wherever found. Hindutva does not 
clip the wings of the Himalayan eagles but only adds 
to their urge. So long as ye, O Hindus ! look upon 
Hindusthan as the land of your forefathers and as the 
land of your prophets, and cherish the priceless heri- 
tage of their culture and their blood, so long nothing 
can stand in the way of your desire to expand. The 
only geographical limits of Hindutva are the limits of 
our earth ! 

So far as the racial aspect of our definition is con- 
cerned we cannot think of any exception that can seri- 
ously challenge its validity. Just as ia England we find 
Iberians, Kelts, Angles, Saxons, Danes, Normans now 
fused, in spite of the racial restrictions on intermarriages* 


into one nation, so the ancient racial distinctions of 
Aryans, Kolarians, Dravidians and others even if they 
had ever been keen, can no longer be recognized. We 
have dealt with the point as exhaustively as necessary in 
the foregoing pages and pointed out that the Anulom 
and Pratilom systems recognized in our law-books bear 
indisputable testimony to the fact that a fusion sufficient 
to keep the flow of common blood through our body 
politic vigorous and fresh was even then an accomplish- 
ed fact. Nature again broke the barriers where custom 
refused to pull them down in time. Bheemsen was 
neither the first nor the last of Aryans to make lovs 
to a Hidimba, nor the Brahmin lady the mother of 
Vyadhakarma, to whom we have referred already, wae 
the only Aryan girl that took a fancy to a Vyadha 
youth. Out of a dozen Bhils or Kolis or even Santals, a 
youth or a girl may at times be picked up and dropped 
in a city school without any fear of being recognized as 
such either by a physical or by a moral test. The race 
that is born of the fusion, which on the whole is a hea- 
lthy one, because gradual, of the Aryans, Kolarians, 
Dravidians and all those of our ancestors, whose blood 
we as a race inherit, is rightly called neither an Aryan, 
nor Kolarian, nor Dra vidian— but the Hindu race; that 
is, that People who live as children of a common 
motherland, adoring a common holyland—the land that 
lies between the Sindhus. Therefore the Santals, Kolis, 
Bhils Panchamas, Namashudras and all other such 
tribes and classes are Hindus. This Sindhusthan is as 
emphatically, if not more emphatically, the land of their 
forefathers as of those of the so-called Aryans ; they 


inherit the Hindu blood and the Hindu culture ; and 
even those of them who have not as yet come fully un- 
der the iflnuence of any orthodox Hindu sect, do still 
worship deities and saints and follow a religion how- 
ever primitive, are still purely attached to this land, 
which therefore to them is not only a Fatherland but a 

There would have been no serious objection raised 
against the cultural aspect of Hindutva too, but for the 
unfortunate misunderstanding that owes its origin to the 
confusing similarity between the two terms Hindutva 
and Hinduism. We have tried already to draw a clear line 
of demarcation between the two conceptions and prote- 
sted against the wrong use of the word Hinduism to 
denote the Sanatan Dharma alone. Hindutva is not 
indentical with Hindu Dharma; nor is Hindu Dharma 
indentical with Hinduism. This twofold mistake that 
indentifies Hindutva with Hindu Dharma and both with 
Sanatani sect is justly resented by our non-Sanatani 
sects or religious systems and goads a small section of 
people amongst them — not to explode this mistaken 
notion, but unfortunately to commit another grave and 
suicidal mistake in the opposite direction and disown 
their Hindutva itself. We hope that our definition will 
leave no ground for any such bitterness of feelings on 
either side and based on truth as it is, would be acknow- 
ledged by all the fair-minded people throughout our 
Hindu society. But as in the general treatment of this 
question we could not take any notice of any special case 
we shall do so now. Let us first take the case of our 
Sikh brotherhood. No one could be so silly as to 


contest the statement that Sindusthan, Asindhu Sindhu 
Paryanta yasya Bharatbhumika', 82 is their Fatherland- 
the land that ever since the first extant records of the 
Vedic Period has been the land where their forefathers 
lived and loved and worshipped and prayed. Secondly, 
they most undoubtedly inherit the Hindu blood in their 
veins as much as any one in Madras or Bengal does 
Nay more, while we Hindus in Maharashtra or Bengal 
inherit the blood of the Aryans as well as of those 
other ancient people who inhabited this land, the Sikhs 
are the almost direct descendants of those ancient 
Sindhus and can claim to have drunk their being at the 
very fountain of this Ganges of our Hindu life before 
she had descended down to the plains, Thirdly, they 
have contributed and to therefore are the rightful co- 
partners in our Hindu culture, For Saraswati was a river 
in the Punjab before she became the Deified Image of 
Learning and Art. To this day, do millions of Hindus 
throughtout Hindusthan join in the enchanted chorus 
with which the Sindhus, your forefathers, oh Sikhs, paid 
the tribute of a grateful people to, and extolled the 
glories of the River on whose banks the first seeds of our 
culture and civilization were sown and catching their 
Rigvedic accents sing 'Ambitame, Naditame, Devitame 
Saraswati; 83 the Vedas are theirs as they are ours, if not 
as a revelation yet as revered work that sings of the first 
giant struggles of man to tap the sources of nature. The 
first giant struggle of Light agsinst the forces of dark- 

83 sTfocr^r, %wtm, ?r^g% srrefcr 1 


ness and ignorance, that had stolen and kept impriso- 
ned the spirited waters and refused to allow the rays of 
Illumination touch man and rouse the soul in him. 
The story of the Sikhs, like any one of us must begin 
with the Vedas, pass on through the palaces of Ayodhya, 
witness the battlefield of Lanka, help Lahu to lay the 
foundation of Lahore and watch prince Sidhartha leave 
the confines of Kapilavastu and enter the caves to find 
some way out to lighten the sorrows of man. The Sikhs 
along with us bewail the fall of Prithviraj, share the 
fate of a conquered people and suffer together as 
Hindus. Millions of Sikh udasis, Nirmalas, the Gahan- 
gambhirs and the Sindhi. Sikhs adore the Sanskrit 
language not only as the language of their ancestors 
but as the sacred language of their land. While the rest 
cannot but own it as the tongue of their forefathers 
and as the Mother of Gurumukhi and Punjabi, which 
yet in its infancy is still sucking the milk of life at its 
breast. Lastly the land Asindhu Sindhuparyanta is not 
only the Pitribhu also the Punyabhu to the Sikhs. The 
land spread from the river, Sindhu, to the seas is not 
only the fatherland but also the holyland to the Sikhs. 
Guru Nanak and Guru Govind, Shri Banda and Ram- 
sing were born and bred in Hindusthan; the lakes of 
Hindusthan are the lakes of nectar ( Amritsar ) and of 
freedom — (Muktasar); the land of Hindusthan is the 
land of prophets and prayer— Gurudvar and Gurughar. 
Really if any community in India is Hindu beyond 
cavil or criticism it is our Sikh brotherhood in the 
Punjab, being almost the autochthonous dwellers of 
the Saptsindhu land and the direct descendants of the 


Sindhu or Hindu people. The Sikh of to day is the 
Hindu of yesterday and the Hindu of to-day may be 
the Sikh of tomorrow. The change of a dress, or a 
custom, or a detail of daily life cannot change the 
blood or the seed, nor can efface and blot out history 

To the millions of our Sikh brethren their 
Hindutva is self-evident. The Sahajdhari,udasi, Nirmal, 
Gahangambhir and the Sindhi Sikhs are proud of 
being Hindus by race and by nationality. As their 
Gurus themselves had been the children of Hindus they 
would fail to understand if not resent any such attempt- 
to class them as Non-Hindus. The Gurugrantha is read 
by the Sanatanis as well as by the Sikhs as a sacred 
work ; both of them have fairs and festivals in common. 
The Sikhs of the Tatkhalsa sect also so far as the bulk 
of their population is concerned, are equally attached to 
their racial appellation and live amongst Hindus as 
Hindus. It cannot be but shocking to them to be told 
that they had suddenly ceased to be Hindus. Our 
racial Unity is so unchallenged and complete that 
inter-marriages are quite common amongst the Sikhs 
and Sanatanis. 

The fact is that the protest that is at times raised 
by some leaders of our Sikh brotherhood against their 
being classed as Hindus would never have been 
heard if the term Hinduism was not allowed to get 
identical with Sanatanism. This confusion of ideas and 
the vagueness of expression resulting therefrom, are at 
the root of this fatal tendency that mars at times the 


cordial realtions existing between our sister Hindu 
communities. We have tried to make it clear that 
Hindutva is not to be determined by any theological 
tests. Yet we must repeat it once more that the Sikhs are 
free to reject any or all things they dislike as supersti- 
tions in Sanatandharma, even the binding authority of 
the Vedas as a revelation. They thereby may cease to be 
Sanatanis, but cannot cease to be Hindus. Sikhs are 
Hindus in the sense of our definition of Hindutva and 
not in any religious sense whatever- Religiously they 
are Sikhs as Jains are Jains, Lingayats are Lingayats, 
Vaishnavas are Vaishnavas ; but all of us racially and 
nationally and culturally are a polity and a people, one 
and indivisible, most fitly and from times immemorial 
called Hindus. No other word can express our racial 
oneness— not even Bharatiya can do that for reasons 
dealt with in the forgoing pages. Bharatiya indicates 
an Indian and expresses a larger generalization but 
cannot express racial unity of us Hindus. We are 
Sikhs, and Hindus and Bharatiyas. We are all three put 
together and none exclusively. 

Another reason besides this fear of being indenti- 
fied with the followers of Sanatanpanth which added to 
the zeal of some of our Sikh brothers and made them 
insist on getting classed separately as non-Hindus, was 
a political one. This is not the place of entering into 
merits or demerits of special representation. The 
Sikhs were naturally anxious to guard the special 
interests of their community and if the Mohammedans 
could enjoy the privilege of a special and communal 
representation, we do not understand why any other 


important minority in India should not claim similar 
concession. But we feel that, that claim should 
not have been backed up by our Sikh brothers by 
an untenable and suicidal plea of being non- 
Hindus. Sikhs, to guard their own interests 
could have pressed for and succeeded in securing 
special and communal representation on the ground of 
being an important minority as our non-Brahmins and 
other communities have done without renouncing 
their birthright of Hindutva. Our Sikh brotherhood is 
certainly not a less important community than the 
Mohammedans — in fact to us Hindus they are more 
important than any non-Hindu community in India. 
The harm that a special and communal representation 
does is never so great as the harm done by the attitude 
of racial aloofness. Let the Sikhs, the Jains, the Lingay- 
ats, the non-Brahmins and even, for the matter of 
that, Brahmins press and fight for the right of special 
and communal representation, if they honestly look 
upon it as indispensable for their communal growth. 
For their growth is the growth of the whole Hindu- 
society. Even in ancient times our four main castes 
enjoyed a kind of special representation on communal 
basis in our councils of State as well as in local bodies. 
They could do that without refusing to get fused into 
the larger whole and incorporated into the wider 
generalization of Hindutva, Let the Sikhs be classed as 
Sikhs religiously, but as Hindus racially and culturally. 

The brave people placed their heads by hundreds 
under the executioner's axe rather than. disown' their 


Guru. 84 Will they disown their seed, forswear their 
fathers and sell their birthright for a mess of pottage ? 
God forbid ! Let our minorities remember that if stre- 
ngth lies in union, then in Hindutva lies the firmest and 
yet the dearest bond that can effect a real, lasting and 
powerful union of our people. You may fancy that it 
pays you to, remain aloof for the passing hour, but it 
would do incalculable harm to this our ancient race and' 
civilization as a whole — and especially to yourselves. 
Your interests are indissolubly bound with the interests 
of your other Hindu brethren. Whenever in the future 
as in the past a foreigner raises a sword against the 
Hindu civilization it is sure to strike you as deadly as 
any other Hindu community. Whenever in future 
as in the past the Hindus as a people come to their 
own and under a Shivaji or a Ranjit, a Ramchandra 
or a Dharma, an Ashoka or an Amoghwarsha 
feeling the quickening touch of life and activity mount 
the pinnacles of glory and greatness — that day would 
shed its lustre on you as well as on any other members of 
our Hindu commonwealth. So, brothers, be not 
lured by the immediate gains, partly or otherwise, 
nor be duped by misreadings and misinterpretations of 
history. I was once told by one who posing as a 
Granthi was nevertheless convicted for committing a 
dacoily in the house of a Brahmin to whom he owed 
money and whom he consequently murdered, that the 
Sikhs were not Hindus and that they could incur no 
guilt by killing a Brahmin as the sons of Govindsing 

84 snr|<r 5tf*t f^r=r fozrr i %t forr fsrcs ^ fen ! 


were betrayed by a Brahmin cook. Fortunately there 
was another Sikh gentleman and a real Granthi and was 
recognized as such by all learned Sikhs who immediate- 
ly contradicted and cornered him by several examples 
of Matidas and others, who had sheltered the Guru and 
proved true to the Sikhs even unto martyrdom. Was 
not Shivaji betrayed by his kith and kin and his grand- 
son again by a Pisal who too was a Hindu ? But did 
Shivaji or his nation disown their race and cease to be 
Hindus ? Many of Lhe Sikhs have acted treacherously 
first at the time of desertion of the heroic Banda, then 
again at the time of the last war of the Khalsa forces 
with the English. Guru Govindsing himself was deserted 
by a number of Sikhs in the very thick of the fight and 
it was this act of treacherous cowardice of these Sikhs 
which by forcing our lion-hearted Guru to try a desperate 
sortie gave occasion to that cursed Brahmin wretch 
to betray his two sons, If, therefore, for the crime of 
the latter we cease to be Hindus, then for the crime 
of the former we ought to cease to be Sikhs too ! 

This minority of the Hindus as well as the major 
communities of them did not fall from the skies as 
separate creations. They are an organic growth that 
has its roots embedded deep in a common land and in 
a common culture. You cannot pick up a lamb and by 
tying a Kachchha and KripanS5 on it, make a lion of 
it ! If the Guru succeeded in forming a band of martyrs 
and warriors he could do so because the race that 
produced him as well as that band was capable of 

85 *P^ ^TFT 


being moulded thus. The lion's seed alone can breed 
lions, The flower cannot say 'I bloom and smell: 
surely I came out of the stalk alone — I have nothing 
to do with the roots ! ' No more can we deny our 
seed or our blood. As soon as you point at a Sikh who 
was true to his Guru you have automatically pointed 
at a Hindu who was true to the Guru for before being 
a Sikh he was, and yet continues to be a Hindu. So 
long as our Sikh brethren are true to Sikhism they 
must of necessity continue to be Hindus for so long 
must this land, this Bharatbhumika from Sindhu to the 
seas, remain their Fatherland and their Holyland. It is 
by ceasing to be Sikhs alone that they may, perhaps, 
cease to be Hindus. 

We have dealt at some length with this special 
case of our Sikh brotherhood as all those arguments 
and remarks would automatically test all similar cases 
of our other non-Vaidik sects and religions in the light of 
our definition. The Devsamajis for example are agno- 
stics but Hindutva has little to do with agnosticism, or 
for the matter of that, atheism. The Devsamajis look on 
this land as the land of their forefathers, their father- 
land as well as their Holyland and are therefore Hindus. 
Of course, it is superfluous, after all this to refer to 
our Aryasamaj. All the essentials of Hindutva hold 
good in their case so eminently that they are Hindus. 
We, in fact, are unable to hit upon any case that can lay 
our definition open to the charge of exclusiveness. 

Tn one case alone it seems to offer some real diffi- 
culty. Is, for example, Sister Nivedita a Hindu ? If ever 


an exception proves the rule it does so here. Our patri- 
otic and noble-minded sister had adopted our land from 
Sindu to the seas as her Fatherland. She truly loved it 
as such, and had our nation been free, we would have 
been the first to bestow the right of citizenship on such 
loving souls. So the first essential may, to some extent, 
be said to hold good in her case. The second essential 
of common blood of Hindu parentage must, neverthe- 
less and necessarily, be absent in such cases as these. 
The sacrament of marriage with a Hindu which really 
fuses and is universally admitted to do so, two beings 
into one may be said to remove this disqualification. 
But although this second essential failed, either way to 
hold good in her case, the third important qualification 
of Hindutva did entitle her to be recognized as a Hindu. 
For she had adopted our culture and come to adore 
our land as her Holyland. She felt, she was a Hindu and 
that is, apart from all technicalities, the real and the most 
important test. But we must not forget that we have to 
determine the essentials of Hindutva in the sense in 
which the word is actually used by an overwhelming 
majority of people. And therefore we must say that any 
convert of non-Hindu parentage to Hindutva can be a 
Hindu, if bona fide, he or she adopts our land as his or her 
country and marries a Hindu, thus coming to love our 
land as a real Fatherland, and adopts our culture and 
thus adores our land as the Punyabhu. The children 
of such a union as that would, other things being equal, 
be most emphatically Hindus. We are not authorized 
to go further. 


But by coming to believe into the tenets of any 
sects of the Hindus a foreign convert may be recognized 
as a Sanatani, or a Sikh, or a Jain; and as these reli- 
gions being founded by or revealed to Hindus, go by 
the name of Hindudharma the convert too, may be 
religiously called a Hindu. But it must be understood 
that a religious or cultural convert possesses only one 
of the three essentials of Hindutva and it is owing to 
this disqualification that people generally do not recog- 
nise as a Hindu any one and every one who subscribes 
to the religious beliefs of our race. So deep our feeling 
of gratitude is towards a Sister Nivedita or an Annie 
Besant for the services they rendered to the cause 
of our Motherland and our culture, so soft-hearted 
and sensitive to the touch of love as a race we 
Hindus are, that Sister Nivedita or a person like her 
who so completely identifies his or her being with the 
Being of our people, is almost unconsciously received 
in the Hindu fold. But it should be done as an excep- 
tion to the rule. The rule itself must neither be too 
rigid nor too elastic The several tests to which we have 
subjected our definition of Hindutva have, we believe, 
proved tftat it satisfies both these requirements and 
involves neither Avyapti nor Ativyapti; neither 
contraction nor expansion of the exact connotation. 
Unique Natural Blessings to Hindusthan 

So far we have not allowed any considerations of 
utility to prejudice our inquiry. But having come to its 
end it will not be out of place to see how far the attri- 
butes, which we found to be the essentials of Hindutva, 
contribute towards the strength, cohesion, and progress 


of our people. Do these essentials constitute a founda- 
tion so broad, so deep, so strong that basing upon it 
the Hindu people can build a future which can face 
and repel the attacks of all the adverse winds that blow; 
or does the Hindu race stand on feet of clay ? 

Some of the ancient nations raised huge walls so 
as to convert a whole country into a fortified castle. 
To-day their walls are trodden to dust or are but scarcely 
discernible by a few scattered mounds here and there; 
while the people they were meant to protect are not 
discernible at all. Our ancient neighbours, the Chinese, 
laboured from generation to generation and raised a 
rampart, embracing the limits of an empire, so wide, 
so high, so strong, a wonder of the human world. That 
too, as all human wonders must, sank under its own 
weight. But behold the ramparts of Nature! Have they 
not, these Himalayas, been standing there as one whose 
desires are satisfied — so they seemed to the Vedic bard 
— so they seem to us to-day. These are our ramparts 
that have converted this vast continent into a cosy 

You take up buckets and fill your trenches with 
water and call it a moat. Behold, Varuna himself, with 
his one hand pushing continents aside, fills the gap by 
pouring seas on seas with the other! This Indian (^cean 
with its bays and gulfs, is our moat. 

These are our frontier lines bringing within our 
reach the advantages of an island as well as an insular 


She is the richly endowed, daughter of God — this 
our Motherland. Her rivers are deep and perennial. 
Her land is yielding to plough and her fields loaded 
with golden harvests. Her necessaries of life are few and 
a genial nature yields them all almost for the asking. 
Rich in her fauna, rich in her flora, she knows she owes 
it all to the immediate source of light and heat— the 
sun. She covets not the icy lands ; blessed be they and 
their frozen latitudes. If heat is at times ' enervating ' 
here, cold is at times benumbing there. If cold induces 
manual labour, heat removes much of its very necessity. 
She takes more delight in quenched thirst than in the 
parched throat. Those who have not, let them delight 
in exerting to have. But those who have — may be 
allowed to derive pleasure from the very fact of having. 
Father Thames is free to work at feverish speed, 
wrapped in his icy sheets. She loves to visit her ghats 
and watch her boats gliding down the Ganges on her 
moonlit waters. With the plough, the peacocks, and 
lotus, the elephant and the Gita, she is willing to 
forego, if that must be, whatever advantage the colder 
latitudes enjoy. She knows she cannot have all her own 
way. Her ^gardens are green and shady, her granaries 
well-stocked, her waters crystal, her flowers scented, 
her fruits juicy and her herbs healing. Her brush is 
dipped in the colours of Dawn and her flute resonant 
with the music of Gokul. Verily Hind is the richly 
endowed daugher of God. 

Neither ths Eaglish nor the French with the 
exception of the Chinese and perhaps the Americans, no 
people are gifted with a l?nd that can equal in natural 


strength and richness the land of Sindusthan . A country, 
a common home is the first important essential of 
a stable strong nationality^ and as of all countries in the 
world our country can hardly be surpassed by any in 
its capacity to afford a soil so specially fitted for the 
growth of a great nation ; we Hindus whose very first 
article of faith is the love we bear to the common 
Fatherland, that love the strongest talismanic tie 
that can bind close and keep a nation firm and enthuse 
and enable it to accomplish things greater than ever. 

The second essential of Hindutva puts the estimate 
of our latent powers of national cohesion and greatness 
yet higher. No country in the world with the exception 
of China again, is peopled by a race so homogeneous, 
yet so ancient and yet so strong both numerically and 
vitally. The Americans too, whom we found equally 
fortunate with us so far as excellent geographical basis 
of nationality is concerned, are decidedly left behind. 
Mohammedans are no race nor are the Christians. They 
are a religious unit, yet neither a racial nor a national 
one. But we Hindus, if possible, are all the three put 
together, and live under our ancient and common roof- 
The numerical strength of our race is an asset that 
cannot be too highly prized. 

And culture ? The English and the Americans feel 
they are kith and kin because they possess a Shake- 
speare in common. But not only Kalidas or a Bhasa 
but, Oh Hindus ! ye possess a Ramayan and Maha- 
bharat in common — and the Vedas ! One of the 
national songs the American children are taught to sing 


attempts to rouse tbeir sense of eternal self-importance 
by pointing out to the hundred years twice told that 
stand behind their history. The Hindu counts his years 
not by centuries but by cycles— the Yuga and the Kalpa 
and amazed asks 

Vfti' ^ ^TcTT TT^CTjft t ! 

The Uttra Kosala of Raghupathi is nowhere to be 
seen, nor is Shri Krishna's city of Mathura . 
He does not attempt to rouse the sense of self-impor- 
tance so much as the sense of proportion which is 
Truth. And that has perhaps made him last longer 
than Ramses and Nebuchadnezzar. If a people that 
had no past has no future, then a people that had 
produced an unending galaxy of heroes and hero- 
worshippers and who are conscious of having fought 
with and vaquished the forces whose might struck 
Greece and Rome, the Pharaohs and the Incas, dead, 
have in their history a guarantee of their future 
greatness more assuring than any other people on 
earth yet possess. 

But besides culture the tie of common holyland 
has at times proved stronger than the chains of a 
Motherland. Look at the Mohammedans. Mecca to 
them is a sterner reality than Delhi or Agra. Some of 
them do not make any secret of being bound to sacri- 
fice all India if that be to the glory of Islam or could 
save the city of their prophet. Look at the Jews ; nei- 
ther centuries of prosperity nor sense of gratitude for 


the shelter they found, can make them more attached 
or even equally attached to the several countries they 
inhabit. Their love is, and must necessarily be divided 
between the land of their birth and the land of their 
Prophets. If the Zionists' dreams are ever realized — if 
Palestine becomes a Jewish State and it will gladden us 
almost as much as our Jewish friends — they, like the 
Mohammedans would naturally set the interests of their 
Holyland above those of their Motherland in Ame- 
rica and Europe arid in base of war between their 
adopted country and the Jewish State, would naturally 
sympathise with the latter, if indeed they do not bodily 
go over to it, History is too full of examples of such 
desertions to cite particulars. The crusades again, 
attest to the wonderful influence that a common holy- 
land exercises over peoples widely separated in race, 
nationality and language, to bind and hold them 

The ideal conditions, therefore, under which a 
nation can attain perfect solidarity and cohesion 
would, other things being equal, be found in the. case 
of those people who inhabit the land they adore, the 
land of whose forefathers is also the land of their Gods 
and Angels, of Seers and Prophets ; the scenes of 
whose history are also the scenes of their mythology. 

The Hindus are about the only people who ate 
blessed with these ideal conditions that are at the same 
time incentive to national solidarity, cohesion and 
greatness. Not even the Chinese are blessed thus. 
Only Arabia and Palestine, if ever the Jews can succeed 


in founding their state there, can be said to possess 
this unique advantage. But Arabia is incomparably 
poorer in the natural, cultural, historical, and nume- 
rical essentials of a great people ; and even if the 
dreams of the Zionists are ever realized into a 
Palestine State still they too must be equally lacking in 

England, France, Germany, Italy, Turkey proper, 
Persia, Japan, Afganistan, Egypt of to-day ( for the old 
descendants of 'Punto* and their Egypt is dead long 
since ), and other African states, Mexico, Peru, Chile 
(not to mention states and nations lesser than all 
these ), though racially more of less hemogeneous are 
yet less advantageously situated than we are in geogra- 
phical, cultural, historical and numerical essentials, 
besides lacking the unique gift of a sanctified Mother- 
land. Of the remaining nations, Russia in Europe, and 
United states in America, though geographically equally 
well-gifted with us, are yet poorer, in almost every 
other requisite of nationality. China alone of the 
present comity of nations is almost a« richty gifted 
with the geographical, racial, cultural essentials as 
the Hindus are. Only in the possession of a common, 
a sacred and a perfect language, the Sanskrit, and a 
sanctified Motherland, we are so far as the essen- 
tials that contribute to national solidarity are 
concerned more fortunate. 

Thus the actual essentials of Hindutva are, as 
this running sketch reveals, also the ideal essentials 
of nationality. If we would, we could build on this 


foundation of Hindutva a future greater than what 
any other people on earth can dream of, greater 
even than our own past ; provided we are able to 
utilize our opportunities. For let our people remem- 
ber that great combinations are the order of the 
day. The league of Nations, the alliances of powers 
Pan-Islamism, Pan-Slavism, Pan-Ethiopism, all little 
beings are seeking to get themselves incorporated into 
greater wholes, so as to be better-fitted for the 
struggle for existence and power. Those who are not 
naturally and historically blessed with numerical or 
geographical or racial advantages are seeking to 
share them with others. Woe to those who have them 
already as their birth-right and know them not; or 
worse, despise them ! The nations of the world are 
desperately trying to find a place in this or that 
combination for aggression— can any one of you, Oh 
Hindus! whether Jain or Samaji or Sanatani or 
Sikh or any other subsection afford to cut your- 
selves off or fall out and destroy the ancient, the 
natural and the organic combination that already 
exists? — a combination that is bound not by any scraps 
of paper nor by the ties of exigencies alone, but by 
the ties of blood, birth and culture? Strengthen 
them if you can : pull down the barriers that have 
survived their utility, of castes and customs, of sects 
and sections: What of interdining?— but intermarriages 
between provinces and provinces, castes and castes, 
be encouraged where they do not exist. But where 
they already exist as between the Sikhs and Sana- 
tanies, Jains and Vaishnayas, Lingayats and Non- 


Lingayats — suicidal be the hand that tries to cut the 
nuptial tie. Let the minorities remember they would 
be cutting the very branch on which they stand. 
Strengthen every tie that binds you to the main 
organism, whether of blood or language or common 
Motherland. Let this ancient and noble stream of 
Hindu blood flow from vein to vein, from Attock to 
Cuttack till at last the Hindu people get fused and 
welded into an indivisible whole, till our race gets 
consolidated and strong sharp as steel. 

Just cast a glance at the past, then at the present: 
Pan-Islamism jn Asia, the political Leagues in Europe, 
the Pan-Ethiopic movement in Africa and America — 
and then see, O Hindus, if your future is not entirely 
bound up with the future of India and the future of 
India is bound up in the last resort, with Hindu strength. 
We are trying our best, as we ought to do, to develop 
the consciousness of and a sense of attachment to the 
greater whole, whereby Hindus, Mohammedans, Parsis 
Christians and Jews would feel as Indians first and 
every other thing afterwards. But whatever progress 
India may have made to that goal one thing remains 
almost axiomatically true— not only in India but every- 
where in the world — that a nation requires a foundation 
to stand upon and the essence of the life of a nation is 
the life of that portion of its citizens whose interests 
and history and aspirations are most closely bound up 
with the land and who thus provide the real foundation 
to the structure of their national state. Tnke the case of 
Turkey. The young Turks after the revolution had to 
open their Parliament and military institutions to Arme- 


mans and Christians on a non-religious and secular basis. 
But when the war with Servia came the Christians and 
Armenians first wavered and then many a regiment 
consisting of them went bodily over to the Servians, 
who politically and racially and religiously were more 
closely bound up with them. Take the case of America; 
when the German war broke out she suddenly had to 
fac£ the danger of desertions of her German citizens; 
while the Negro citizens there sympathise more with their 
brethren in Africa than with their white countrymen. 
American State, in the last resort, must stand or fall 
with the fortunes of its Anglo-Saxon constituents. So 
with the Hindus, they being the people, whose past, 
present and future are most closely bound with the soil 
of Hindusthan as Pitribhu, asPunyabhu, they constitute 
the foundation, the bedrock, the reserved forces of the 
Indian state. Therefore even from the point of Indian 
nationality, must ye, O Hindus, consolidate and stre- 
ngthen Hindu nationality; not to give wanton offence 
to any of our non-Hindu compatriots, in fact to any 
one in the world but in just and urgent defence of 
our race and land; to render it impossible for others to 
betray her or to subject her to unprovoked attack by 
any of those 'Pan-isms' that are struggling forth from 
continent to continent. As long as other communities in 
India or in the world are not respectively planning India 
first or mankind first, but all are busy in organizing 
offensive and defensive alliances and combinations on 
enrirely narrow racial or religious or national basis, so 
long, at least, so long O Hindus, strengthen if you can 
those subtle bonds that like nerve threads bind you in 


one organic social being. Those of you who in a 
lit suicidal try to cut off the most vital of those ties 
and dare to disown the name Hindu will find to their 
cost that in doing so they have cut themselves off from 
the very source of our racial life and strength. 

The presence of only a few of these essentials of 
nationality which we have found to constitute Hindutva 
enabled little nations like Spain or Portugal to get 
themselves lionized in the world. But when all of those 
ideal conditions obtain here what is there in the human 
world that the Hindus cannot accomplish? 

Thirty crores of people, with India for their basis 
of operation, for their Fatherland and for their Holy- 
land with such a history behind them, bound together 
by ties of a common blood and common culture can 
dictate their terms to the whole world. A day will come 
vihen mankind will have to face the force. 

Equally certain it is that whenever the Hindu* 
come to hold such a position whence they could dictate 
terms to the whole world — those terms cannot be very 
different from the terms which Gita dictates' or the 
Buddha lajs down- A Hindu is most intensely so, 
when he ceases to be Hindu; and with a Shankar 
claims the whole earth for a Benares 'Waranasi 
Medini ! ' or with a Tukaram exclaims 

'my countiy ! Oh brothers, 'the limits of the Universe 
— there the frontiers of my country lie V 


Swatantrya Veer V. D. Savarkar 
(1) War of Indian Independence 1857 

This book was Written in 1908, It was proscribed by 
the British Government before its publication; Lala 
Hardayal, Martyr Bhagat Singh & Netaji Subhash 
Chandra Bose Published its underground editions. It is 
honoured as Bhagawad Geeta by Armed Revolution- 
aries. Ban on it was lifted in 1946. Now it is translat- 
ed in Hindi, Tamil, Malyali, Gujarathi. 

Complete English Edition (in Press) Rs. 25 

Abriged - „ Rs. 2 

Hindutwa, Hindu Rashtra Darshan, 
Hindu Pad Padshahi (In one Book)- Rs. 16 

4 Historic Statements Rs. 25 

Six Golden Chapters of Hindu 
History ( in Press ) Rs.25 

Veer Savarkar -Biography : ByD. Keer Rs. 30 

For Veer Savarkar" s Literature and about Copy right 
Write to: 

Shri Balarao Savarkar, Veer Savarkar Prakashan, 
Savarkar Sadan, 71 Shivajee Park, Bombay 28